Summit participants emphasised that the most effective chance we have of reducing harm is to focus on prevention and rehabilitation.

“It’s about the whole person approach, not a management of symptoms or problems but instead looking deeper into the why and how.”

This page contains only a small part of what we heard – check out the Summit Playback for the full summary.

Crime is not an isolated event

Summit participants felt that the criminal justice system does not sufficiently address the underlying issues which lead to some peoples’ offending.

Many people entering the system are dealing with learning and literacy difficulties, mental health issues, addiction, traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Address the root causes

Summit participants said that we need to stop only treating the symptoms of crime and address its root causes, including poverty, education, family violence, housing and intergenerational trauma.

They felt this was key to attaining safer communities and lowering rates of offending.

Identify need and provide assistance

Summit participants told us that once people are in the criminal justice system, they need care and support to transition them out and help them on a better path.

Many people agreed that a positive criminal justice system should continue to use evidence to evaluate and invest in programmes and models that are leading to good outcomes.

Check out the Summit Playback(external link) for the full summary of what we heard at the Summit. 

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