Our design guide acts as a starting point for discussion with local stakeholder groups, community organisations and government.
1. Context: Reducing incarceration
Detention is a last-resort measure, and it is important that resources are directed towards addressing the underlying causes of crime, preventing young people coming into contact with the justice system. It is critical to divert young people from custody, and it must be recognised that this involves reducing the number of custodial beds. In the last-resort event that a young person is remanded or sentenced to custody, it is important that these young people find themselves within a safe and therapeutic environment, conducive to their prosocial rehabilitation, reducing the risk of their reoffending.
2. Facility-design focused
The physical environment of a facility greatly impacts the procedures within a youth justice environment, the relationships between staff and young people, and ultimately a young person’s prospects of rehabilitation and community safety. As such, facility design can either promote or impede the delivery of rehabilitative programs.
By examining the evidence of what works in addressing a young person’s offending behaviour, a number of key principles emerge as conditions for successful facility design. These principles form the basis of a design brief; a model which can be closely interwoven with specific contexts, programs, and staffing approaches. The design principles have been demonstrated to work in leading jurisdictions around the world, with these precedents and examples forming an important part of our research.