The Andrews Labor Government is making our state safer and our justice system fairer by helping young people stay on the right path, targeting the root causes of crime, and providing record levels of support for victims of crime.
More than $600 million will be provided in the Victorian Budget 2022/23 as part of a sweeping package of investments focused on youth diversion, reducing reoffending, increasing mental health support and providing financial assistance to victims of crime.
The Labor Government is providing more than $39 million over four years to establish a new Financial Assistance Scheme to replace the current Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal – making it easier and fairer for people to get the critical help they need.
This latest funding combined with those from last year’s Budget will see almost $100 million provided to support victims of crime – the largest investment by any Victorian government.
Building on investments that have already seen young people successfully diverted from the youth justice system, more than $15.5 million will go to a range of programs to prevent more young people entering the system – and ensuring those who do have the best chance at rehabilitation.
The investment includes funding more Aboriginal Youth Justice Hubs to help prevent children coming into contact with the justice system as part of the implementation of Wirkara Kulpa, the Aboriginal Youth Justice Strategy.
The funding will also expand the Central After-hours Assessment and Bail Service and investment in the Children’s Court and Victoria Legal Aid to ensure children and young people are not remanded unnecessarily because there is no available court to hear their bail applications.
We’re also reinvesting and increasing funding in the Women and Mentoring program, delivering $3.6 million to continue supporting women who are in or at risk of entering the criminal justice system.
More than $357 million will be provided to commission and open the Cherry Creek youth justice facility, with two neighbourhoods comprising 56 beds expected to open in 2023.
Additionally, $1.5 million will be provided to plan and design a youth forensic mental service in adult prisons to ensure young offenders aged 18-25 serving sentences in adult custody receive services and support tailored to them.
More than $76 million in funding will help drive down offending, including continuing the Maribyrnong Community Residential Facility for men exiting the prison system who would otherwise be homeless – because you can’t turn your life around without a roof over your head.
The family visits support program will be bolstered, allowing mothers in prison to maintain bonds with their children, and existing rehabilitation and reintegration support services will also be enhanced.
Quotes attributed to Minister for Victim Support, Crime Prevention, Corrections and Youth Justice Natalie Hutchins
“We are dealing with the root causes of crime and building a safer community for all Victorians.”
“We’re providing record levels of support for victims of crime and boosting support for diversion, women, and crime prevention.”
“We’re also investing in critical support for Aboriginal young people and youth mental health services to ensure young people can get the support they need to get their lives back on track.”
Reviewed 03 May 2022