Tomorrow may be the first time Australians see action towards raising the age Australia locks up children, with the issue on the State and Territory Attorneys-General meeting agenda for the first time.
WA Attorney General John Quigley will be moving a motion regarding a national approach to raise the age of criminal responsibility.
In response, Amnesty International Campaigner Belinda Lowe said:
“Politicians are finally responding to the growing movement of Australians who want their governments to stop locking up 10 year olds.”
“Tomorrow marks the first time all States and Territories will meet to discuss raising the minimum age that Australia puts children behind bars, away from their families.
“The Northern Territory was the first to commit to raising this age, and Queensland and ACT are also looking at the issue.
“Other countries have a median minimum age of 14, which is the age recommended in the latest medical research and by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
“Australia is lagging far behind the rest of the world by locking up such very young children, so we welcome all Governments recognising that through their discussion tomorrow.
“The evidence is in: human rights, legal and health experts are advocating for this change. I hope Australian Attorneys-General are listening to them.
“The next step for State and Territory Attorneys-General is to continue to work together to raise the age to 14 by June”.