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Indigenous juvenile detention rates

Crime facts info no. 60

ISSN 1445-7288
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, October 2003

The Australian Institute of Criminology recently released Statistics on Juvenile Detention in Australia: 1981-2002. This paper provides a statistical overview of juvenile detention from 1981 to 2002, with a detailed review of the financial year 2001-02. At 30 June 2002, the rate of detention for Indigenous juveniles in Australia was 256.7 per 100,000 relevant population*, while the rate for non-Indigenous juveniles was 13.6 per 100,000 relevant population*. This means that Indigenous juveniles were approximately 19 times more likely to be detained in Australian detention facilities than non-Indigenous juveniles in June 2002. However, since 1994, both the Indigenous and non-Indigenous rates of detention have reduced comparatively, with the Indigenous rate reducing by 62 per cent and the rate of detention for non-Indigenous youth reducing by 56 per cent.

Persons aged 10 to 17 in juvenile detention by Indigenous status, 1994-2002

* Rates exclude Tasmanian figures. Rates are per 100,000 relevant population in Australia, excluding Tasmania. Indigenous-status data were only available from 1994. See publication for full explanations.


  • Bareja M. & Charlton K. 2003, Statistics on juvenile detention in Australia: 1981-2002, Technical and background paper no. 5 Australian Institute of Criminology Canberra.