Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research

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NSW Custody Statistics: Quarterly update September 2019

Fall in the NSW youth detention population 

Full report - NSW Custody Statistics: Quarterly update Sept 2019 (pdf 1.3mb)

Embargo: 10:30am, Wednesday, 6 November 2019


New figures released today by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) show that the NSW youth detention population fell by 15.1% in the last 12 months.  That is a fall of 42 young people down to 237 people in September 2019.

The drop has been driven largely by a decrease in the number of Aboriginal boys in detention which fell 22% from 124 in September 2018 to 97 in September 2019.  While still unacceptably high, the proportion of the youth detention population who are Aboriginal fell from 49% in September 2018 to 44% in September 2019.   

The adult prison population has remained relatively stable, growing by just 1% in the last 12 months.  In September 2019 the NSW Prison population stood at 13,522 people.

Commenting on the findings, Jackie Fitzgerald, Acting Executive Director of the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) said the fall in the youth detention population was encouraging. “The decline is consistent with the general reduction in youth offending over the past decade.  In the last year there has also been a reduction in the proportion of young people sentenced to custody.” 

Further enquiries: Jackie Fitzgerald 02 8346 1100
Copies of the report: 
www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au