Justice Health

Decades on from the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are drastically over-represented in Victoria’s criminal justice system.

Through our policy and advocacy work, VACCHO strives to stamp out systemic racism, implement strong principles of self-determination and culturally safe practices, and ensure human rights are afforded to the most vulnerable members of our Community.

Key Work:

  • VACCHO continues to advocate for the Victorian Government to raise the age of criminal responsibility to 14 years of age, as a protective health factor for Aboriginal childhood development.
  • VACCHO strongly opposes the ‘tough on crime’ approach to dealing with offending behavior in young people, advocating for greater investment and focus on early prevention, intervention, and justice reinvestment that is underpinned by self-determination and cultural safety.
  • Through our advocacy and policy work VACCHO has called on governments for greater scrutiny of the youth justice system by calling on independent inquiries and the ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT).
  • In 2014 VACCHO strongly opposed the Australian Government’s proposed amendments to the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 on the basis that racial discrimination has devastating and lasting impacts on a person’s health and wellbeing.
  • We strive to address the overrepresentation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people coming into contact with the criminal justice system and call on the Victorian Government to lead the way in raising the age of criminal responsibility