15 Jul 2013

Group wants 17-year-olds processed through Youth Court

11:36 am on 15 July 2013

Lobby group JustSpeak says it is unfair and inconsistent for 17-year-olds to be processed through the adult criminal justice system.

It is seeking support from the public, other youth organisations and the Government for the teenagers to go through the Youth Court.

And aid agency UNICEF supports the idea however the national advocacy manager at UNICEF, Barbara Lambourn, says the idea is not new.

Ms Lambourn says a lot of other countries put 17-year-olds through youth courts.

JustSpeak spokesperson Lydia Nobbs says while 17-year-olds can not vote or buy alcohol, they must go to court and prison with people much older.

Ms Nobbs says the Youth Court - where the age limit currently is 16 - would be the preferred option because it can provide better rehabilitation options.