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Gerry Georgatos says relocation of young inmates in WA ‘gears them up’ for life in jail




Young offenders at a detention centre in Perth’s south will be relocated to a new facility at an adult prison after damaging cells and behaving aggressively towards staff, ABC News has reported.

The group of 20 boys, the youngest 14 years of age, will be moved from Banksia Hill Detention Centre to a new youth detention facility at Casuarina Prison, south of Perth.

The relocation plan has received mixed reviews.

The West Australian government has released photos showing extensive damage to cells at Perth’s Banksia Hill juvenile detention centre. Photo: Department of Justice.

National Suicide Prevention and Trauma Recovery Project coordinator, Gerry Georgatos, told ABC News the plan was a sign WA authorities were giving up on vulnerable youth. 

“It’s saying: ‘You don’t matter, the only thing that matters is the safety of the prison personnel’,” Mr Georgatos explained.

Gerry Georgatos is against the plan.

He added that the move was ‘gearing’ the young men for a life in the justice system, instead of supporting them out of criminal behaviour.

WA’s Corrective Services Commissioner, Mike Reynolds, said in a statement that “the short-term youth detention centre will provide a safe environment for the 20 young men while we restore Banksia Hill to a safe working environment for staff and detainees and complete the necessary infrastructure works.”

Source: ABC News.

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