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Creating Safer Communities: Back on Track – Cutting Youth Crime Plan

Office of the Chief Minister

The Territory Labor Government today released its Back on Track: Cutting Youth Crime Plan.

The plan gives police and courts the power to get kids off the street and into programs like boot camps, which have a proven track record of preventing further crime.

A rollout of programs Territory wide will begin in the next eight weeks, providing the most extensive suite of measures ever put in place to address the issue of repeat young offenders.

The $8.35 million program will also include expanded court-ordered victim conferencing and additional victim support programs across the Northern Territory.

Back on Track: Cutting Youth Crime will be delivered through:



This is a collaboration between the Murin Association Inc and Rusca Developments.

The FIRST STEP program supports and mentors young people to develop employment skills through a range of vocational education and training qualifications. 


Building on the success of previous youth wilderness camps, additional camps (for up to 10 young people per camp) will be delivered for young people in the Groote Eylandt, Big Rivers, Darwin and Palmerston regions in 2019/20.


Will deliver The Right Track program to support young people aged 10-18 years who are at-risk of entering or have come in contact with the youth justice system. The program will provide intensive specialist case management and off-site intensive activities that engage young people, family members, and elders. The program will include four wilderness camps (for up to 10 young people) per year. Camp locations will be in the MacDonnell Regional Council region.


Will deliver a six month intensive targeted program for high risk young people. The program provides an alternative sentencing option and works to reduce reoffending, strengthen connections to culture and country and increase engagement with family and community. As part of the program, 10 on-country, culture camps will be delivered for 30 young people each year in partnership with the Men’s Tjilirra Movement. This in addition to providing early intervention camps.


Murin and the Rusca Brothers will expand the First Step program to include a pilot Vocational Education and Training program in Alice Springs. The program uses Aboriginal mentors and leaders to teach young people about the construction industry, provide them with a trade qualification and prepare them for entry into the workforce. As part of the program, young people build accommodation facilities for remote communities.


The ANGLICARE program will support young people to undertake youth justice conferencing and complete agreed actions to give back to the community. They will partner with Aboriginal organisations and elders to strengthen community connections and provide life skills to help kids stay on track.


This program will help identify the critical areas of need and risk that sit within and around children, young people and their families. This will allow for monitoring and reporting of the young person at risk.


The Back on Track program will focus on reparation to victims of crime or those hurt by the young person’s actions. It will provide young people with the opportunity to repair the harm they may have caused by giving back to the community and assisting them to identify what support and services are needed to help them achieve their goals.


The Back on Track service model will provide a suite of assessments and support young people to prepare for and attend youth justice conferencing and give back to the community. This will occur through undertaking community work and providing reparation to victims and the community. Congress will provide case management of young people through intensive programs that provide life skills, increase cultural connection and have strong links with community sporting clubs. They will work with families to increase their capacity to support the young person.


Will support young people participate in youth justice conferencing and undertake community service.

Saltbush will focus on teaching employment skills and support young people to complete a range of training and employment programs.


Will provide an intensive family support and cultural program to enable young people to get back on track.

Quotes from Chief Minister, Michael Gunner.

“Youth who do the wrong thing must face the consequences because all Territorians have the right to be safe.

“The Government’s new Back on Track program tackles youth crime by giving police and courts the ability to get kids off the street and into programs like boot camps to get their lives back on track.”


Quotes from Minister for Territory Families, Dale Wakefield

“Back on Track delivers programs which have proven to stop offenders committing more crime. It includes increased youth justice conferencing where courts order offenders to sit before victims and face up to the impacts of their actions.

“Youth who pose a serious safety risk for Territorians will still face detention. But Back on Track gives us another set of tools to cut youth crime now and for the longer term.”

Media contact: Cameron Angus 0404 021 192