This report uncovers detailed findings and outlines 38 recommendations across the following topics raised during consultations: connection to culture; racism and discrimination; education; accessible activities and programs; supportive workers and services as well as justice.
Children and young people offered practical solutions and recommendations, some of these include: services targeting Aboriginal children and young people are designed and delivered by Aboriginal owned and controlled organisations; stronger connection to culture through initiatives; more accessible activities and programs especially after hours and over weekends; more training for frontline workers and an increase of life skills programs in schools.
Across all consultations, being able to access recreational activities and programs was reported as very important along with maintaining a connection to culture. Children and young people spoke about how they would benefit from more programs and opportunities to connect with culture through Elders and community members. Racism and discrimination were big issues mentioned across all consultations and they discussed what makes them feel unwelcome and welcome in their communities.
- That services targeting Aboriginal children and young people are designed, managed and delivered by Aboriginal people and through Aboriginal owned and controlled organisations. Aboriginal owned and controlled organisations are further resourced to provide services to Aboriginal children and young people including connecting to culture programming.
- Explore opportunities for mentoring programs for children and young people tackling complex challenges to be delivered by community members, Elders and other respected people with similar lived experiences to share knowledge and life experience.
- All frontline workers, working with children and young people, receive ongoing cultural awareness training, and additional programs and policies are developed to acknowledge and address the racism and discrimination experienced by Aboriginal children and young people.
- School disciplinary procedures should be reviewed and alternatives to long suspensions should be introduced, including the expansion of suspension centres, including Aboriginal owned and controlled centers, that link behaviour management strategies with the provision of learning support.
- Greater co-ordination and overall strategy to further enhance and support Juvenile Justice staff to develop a suite of programs whose aim is to rehabilitate children and young people through educational, psychosocial, personal and living skills development.