However, Director of Clinical Legal Programs Anna Copeland said the conditions the juvenile offenders were being held in directly contravened Western Australia’s human rights obligations and the provisions of the Young Offenders Act (WA).
“As a result of the Banksia Hill riot, all the boys from that facility have been transferred to Hakea adult prison, whether they were involved in the riot or not,” she said.
“The inappropriate nature of the facilities at Hakea has resulted in many negative impacts on the young people now detained there.”
Ms Copeland said these issues included:
- Long periods of lockdown, initially for 24 hours a day
- Limited access to family and friends through a limited visits program
- Limited access to education programs and little or no access to rehabilitation programs
- Limited food, resulting in visible weight loss in many of the boys
- Incidences of aggression and bullying from adult prison officers not trained in dealing with young people
“In response to this unacceptable situation, our clinical legal education students have made submissions to the Inquiry into the Riot at Banksia Hill and the Senate Inquiry into the Value of Justice Re-investment,” Ms Copeland said.
“They are also working with human rights lawyers and barristers to try to improve the situation for these young people.”