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Youth justice indicators summary report: December 2020

Crime reduction Juvenile offenders Youth justice New Zealand

This report provides insight into the performance of various aspects of the New Zealand youth justice system from 2009/10 to 2019/20.

The youth justice indicators collated here measure volumes and patterns for children and young people across key stages in the youth justice system. This allows for a more comprehensive understanding of the system from when children and young people who offend first enter it, how they are dealt with as they move through it, and if they re-offend. Unless stated, children include 10- to 13-year-olds at offence date, and young people include those aged 14 to 16 (14 to 17 from 1 July 2019) at offence date.

Key findings:

  1. Long-term term reductions in offending by children and young people have continued
  2. There have been substantial recent positive changes for these indicators with improvements for Māori generally greater than for non-Māori, building on initial progress from previous years
  3. The mix of offending by children and young people has changed since 2009/10
  4. Offending rates for 17-year-olds were very similar to 16-year-olds in 2019/20
  5. Children and young people who offend often have complex problems
  6. Despite recent substantial improvements large differences still exist between Māori and European/other children and young people for most measures.
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