Youth crime is rising in Australia

Youth crime in Australia has risen by 6% in the 12 months to June 2023, new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics has shown.
Youth crime in Australia

Youth crime in Australia rose by 6% in the 12 months to June 2023, according to new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Police took action against more than 48,000 Australian children aged 10 to 17, an increase of nearly 3,000 from the previous year.

It comes as several states and territories have cracked down on juvenile offending.

Youth crime in Australia

The most common offences by young people were related to violence. Acts intended to cause injury made up one in four youth crimes.

Illicit drug offences decreased for the eighth consecutive year.

Two-thirds of offenders were boys. The most common age range for youth offending was 14-17-year-olds.

Repeat offenders

One-third of all young people included in the ABS findings were found to have committed repeat offences during the year to June 2023.

More than 38% of youth offenders were from NSW, Australia’s most populous state.

Queensland and Victoria recorded the next highest numbers of criminal proceedings brought against children.

Government response

To address rising youth crime, the Queensland Government increased penalties for juvenile car theft and criminalised breach of bail for young people.

Last year, Queensland also passed laws to allow youth offenders to be held in police watchhouses indefinitely, amid over-crowding of youth detention centres.

The NT Government has introduced measures to improve community safety, including a pilot program where NT police and social services “take at-risk youth found by police on the streets at night without a responsible adult, to a safe place”.

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