Aboriginal Youth Voice Gets the Go Ahead!

Aboriginal Youth Voice Gets the Go Ahead!


Aboriginal Youth Voice Gets the Go Ahead!

Thursday, 19 September 2019

The Law Society of Western Australia is pleased to announce that through its Lore/Law project, Aboriginal youth voice will play a key role in reducing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth engagement with the justice system.

73% of young people in juvenile detention centres in WA are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander and these numbers are growing every year[1]. Disproportionate Indigenous imprisonment constitutes a crisis affecting our society and is costing our State $1.1 billion per year[2].

Lore/Law will deliver a ground breaking co-designed initiative, which sees an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth Leadership Team taking the lead in engaging with communities on issues of significance to local youth.

The project acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth often walk in two worlds and will see engagement with relevant local stakeholders, followed by the development of community-led and culturally appropriate solutions.

Lore/Law will begin in early 2020, starting in the Kalgoorlie, Boulder and Coolgardie region.

$430,000 in funding has been secured, including through Lotterywest and the Criminal Property Confiscation Grants Program. Law Society President Greg McIntyre SC said, “It is a credit to Lotterywest and the State Government that they stand behind a co-designed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth voice approach to addressing justice issues. Lore/Law is a 25+ year skills-for-life project that empowers young people to address the issues affecting them in their communities.”

The Law Society still has a further $200,000 to raise to complete the Kalgoorlie, Boulder and Coolgardie project in full over two years. The Law Society is accepting expressions of interest from organisations or individuals who would like to make a financial contribution and become part of this bold initiative that sees Aboriginal youth voice drive the discussions and outcomes for Aboriginal youth in Western Australia. To discuss further, please contact Áine Whelan, General Manager Programmes at the Law Society: awhelan@lawsocietywa.asn.au.

– ENDS –

For comment please contact:

Andrew MacNiven
Senior Media and Communications Officer
(08) 9324 8634

About us: The Law Society of Western Australia is the peak professional association for lawyers in the State. The Society is a not-for-profit association dedicated to the representation of its more than 4,000 members. The Society enhances the legal profession through its position as a respected leader and contributor on law reform, access to justice and the rule of law. The Society is widely acknowledged by the legal profession, government and the community as the voice of the legal profession in Western Australia.

[1] Department of Corrective Services, Young People in Detention Quarterly Statistics, March Quarter 2017, Table 1: Number of young people in detention as at 31 March 2017, <https://www.correctiveservices.wa.gov.au/_files/about-us/statistics-publications/statistics/2017/quarterly/2017-quarter1-youth-custody.pdf>.

[2] The PwC Report, Indigenous Incarceration: Unlock the Facts, May 2017, 3.2.4 Fiscal costs vary significantly by jurisdiction, p. 29, < https://www.pwc.com.au/indigenous-consulting/assets/indigenous-incarceration-may17.pdf>.

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