Update 18/08/2016: Amnesty has obtained new information of abuse happening in Cleveland and Brisbane juvenile detention centres in Queensland. This includes staff stripping naked children who are at risk of self-harm, the prolonged isolation of kids (including eight Aboriginal kids held up to 22 hours a day for 10 days), and handcuffing kids during physical exercise and family visits.
We also have information on use of force resulting in injury. Four young people have suffered fractured wrists as a result of control and restraint techniques.
In August 2015, a guard allowed a dog to approach an Indigenous girl in an aggressive manner. In another incident, staff allowed a dog to intimidate young people for no apparent reason.
On 25 July Four Corners exposed the treatment of six boys held in isolation, tear gassed and brutalised, at the Don Dale Detention Centre in Darwin.
We saw Dylan Voller, then a child of 13, repeatedly targeted, stripped naked and struck by guards. In subsequent years Dylan was also strapped in a chair and hooded for hours, allegedly for being at risk of suicide.
Let’s be clear – this is child abuse and this is torture.
Fortunately public outrage has already forced Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to announce a Royal Commission into Don Dale and the NT youth detention regime. A Royal Commission is an important step but it fails to provide urgent, independent oversight to stop torture and human rights abuses in all youth detention centres.
In the past five years there’s been serious allegations about the treatment of children in detention centres in every state and territory. With little independent oversight kids all across Australia are vulnerable to brutality and mistreatment.
Call on the Prime Minister to ensure the safety of all kids in all detention centres, and to implement laws that hold torturers of kids to account.