Jail fails most young crooks: study

JAIL is failing to put many young crooks on the right side of the law, researchers say.

An Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report shows the likelihood of children and teenagers returning to youth justice supervision is highest among those who served their time in prison.

Young people who served their time in the community were less likely to re-offend.

The Young People Returning to Sentenced Youth Justice Supervision 2015 report looked at 3000 people aged 10-16 released from jail or community supervision in 2012-13. The researchers found 76% of those who were jailed returned to some form of sentenced supervision in the next year, while just 44% of young people who served their sentence in the community got back in trouble.

AIHW spokesman Tim Beard said community-based sentences using programs that aimed to lower the frequency and seriousness of offending could explain the difference.

"The rate of return to sentenced supervision is an indicator of the effectiveness of these services," Mr Beard said.

- APN NEWSDESK


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