Envisioning a community justice centre for Western Australia? Feasibility, challenges, and opportunities

Sarah Louise Murray, Suzanne Edward May

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The challenges faced by the justice system are well known. The Western Australian court system has become a revolving door for offenders who become enmeshed in the law due to life circumstances including mental illness, poverty, homelessness, family breakdown and violence, inter-generational trauma, drug and alcohol addiction and unemployment. Community Justice Centres (CJCs) are an innovative way of making justice part of the fabric of a local area and
harnessing each community’s potential for experimentation and rejuvenation. Through the colocation of a court house with a tightly integrated support service team, this justice model turns the court intervention into an opportunity to problem-solve to address the downward spiral of offending and to partner with local residents, organisations, schools, local government and businesses to create a place of community connection and support. For such a model to ‘work’ it requires community ownership, buy-in and extensive consultation to create a bespoke Centre that resonates with the needs of the community it serves. This article explores the Community Justice Centre model and its potential benefits for Western Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-239
JournalUniversity of Western Australia Law Review
Volume43
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018

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