Queensland’s Specialist Courts on show in new video series

Media release

Monday, 2 December 2019

The Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council has today released a new video series focused on informing Queenslanders about the specialist courts.

Doing Justice Differently aims to assist people to understand the specialist sentencing process a defendant goes through and to provide an insight to the potential outcomes of alternative sentencing approaches.

The first video in the series concentrates on Queensland’s Drug and Alcohol Court.

Council Chair, John Robertson, said the specialist courts were unique in that they re-think the sentencing response to crime and the offenders involved, applying considered and effective resources and services to address the underlying causes of offending.

“The Drug and Alcohol Court provides an intensive and targeted response to adult offenders with severe drug and alcohol use directly associated with their offending,” Mr Robertson said.

“Our video shows how offenders are strictly monitored by the court – sentenced to undertake treatment that aims to address their drug and alcohol dependencies and criminal thinking,” he said.

“The court aims to improve community safety by rehabilitating offenders so they can reintegrate into the community as law-abiding members of society”.

In creating the new video series and working with the specialist courts, the Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council is putting a spotlight on the many ways the court system is working to invest in people to keep communities safe.

“Incarceration rates in Queensland increased by 44 per cent between 2012 and 2018 and costs associated with imprisonment are significant – the specialist courts have an important role to play in keeping people out of prison and rehabilitating them,” Mr Robertson said.

“Our Doing Justice Differently video series highlights that the court system recognises that it’s not one size fits all and it’s not about being soft on crime.

“Our videos can help the community understand the role of the specialist courts – connecting offenders, families and friends to support, treatment and services that can help turn lives around and improve community safety.”

The Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council will release a number of videos in the next six months in the Doing Justice Differently series.

*It costs about $107,000 to accommodate a prisoner for a year.