This piece originally appeared on Huffington Post Australia on 29 July 2016.
The recent Four Corners exposé of mistreatment of young people in juvenile detention in the Northern Territory shocked all Australians. The Prime Minister has correctly called a Royal Commission into the abuse.
Although the terms of reference for the review are quite narrow, Australia should take this incident as an opportunity to reconsider our approach to criminal justice more generally. Because the kids who suffer in abusive detention centres will have a tough time staying off the path to a life of crime, where they will join a growing number of their countrymen, and from which there is currently little chance of escaping given the way our criminal justice system operates. Continue reading