10 August 2022

Life Without Barriers commends the Raise the Age campaign on handing over thousands of petition signatories to the Attorneys-General, demanding urgent action to #RasietheAge of criminal responsibility in Australia.

The Raise the Age Campaign encourages the Council of Attorney Generals to ensure the age of criminal responsibility across Australia is raised from 10 years old to 14 years old, to be in national and international recommendations.

Chief Executive of Life Without Barriers, Claire Robbs said raising the age of criminal responsibility in Australia is a vital first step in protecting the health and wellbeing of some of the most vulnerable children in the country.

“Over 200,000 people have signed the #RaisetheAge petition which calls on State and Federal Governments to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 10 years old to 14 years old,” Ms Robbs said.

“Governments and community need to invest in community-based solutions and look at the underlying challenges faced by young people rather than locking kids in prison cells. Children as young as 10 belong at home and in school and in our communities where they can be properly supported.”

Life Without Barriers supports thousands of children in child protection and out-of-home care who are more likely to interact with the criminal justice system, despite already being one of the most vulnerable groups in society.

Children who receive child protection services are nine times more likely to encounter the youth justice system. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are 17 times more likely to be involved in child protection and youth justice.

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