Young Indigenous People in Detention

In all Australian states and territories in 2014–15, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people (aged 10 to 17 years) had a higher rate of detention than non-Indigenous young people. The greatest difference in detention rates between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous young people was in South Australia, where the detention rate was approximately 20 times greater. Victoria had the second smallest difference in detention rates by Indigenous status after Tasmania. The rate of 9.4 per 1,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people was approximately 13 times greater than the rate of 0.7 per 1,000 non-Indigenous young people.

Data on the detention rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in Western Australia and the Northern Territory was not available for 2014–15.

Graph and table: the rates per 1,000 young people in detention during 2014–15 according to Indigenous status, using only the population of 10 to 17 year olds in detention and in the general population to calculate the rate per 1,000 people

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Jurisdiction Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander rates Non-Indigenous rates Ratio
South Australia 26.2 1.3 20
Australian Capital Territory 22.5 1.6 14
New South Wales 16.0 1.0 17
Queensland 14.7 0.8 18
Victoria 9.4 0.7 13
Tasmania 1.8 0.8 2
Western Australia n.a. n.a. n.a.
Northern Territory n.a. n.a. n.a.

Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Youth Justice in Australia 2014–15, Cat. no. AUS 198 (2016), Supplementary table S77b (external link opens in a new window)