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Commissioners distressed by death of boy after being detained in Perth prison

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice
Content type: Media Release
Topic(s): Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice / Indigenous Social Justice, Children

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner June Oscar AO, and National Children's Commissioner Anne Hollonds have issued a joint statement following the death of a First Nations teenager who had been held in a youth detention unit at the Casuarina adult prison in Perth.

Commissioner Oscar: “My thoughts are with the family and community of the 16-year-old boy who passed overnight after being found unresponsive in his cell at Casuarina Prison. This is incredibly sad.

"Prison is no place for our children.

"The evidence is clear, the recommendations for prevention have been made over and over again. Placing children in detention robs them of their childhood and deprives them from accessing the support they need.”

Commissioner Hollonds: "As Australia's National Children's Commissioner I am deeply distressed to learn that a 16-year-old boy has passed away following self-harm while incarcerated at an adult prison.

"I extend my deepest sympathy and condolences to his family. This is a tragedy that should never happen.

"Under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which Australia is a signatory, we have an obligation to protect the human rights of children."