You are here:

Children’s Court Youth Diversion Service

This service provides an opportunity for eligible children and young people to address harm caused by their offending by taking responsibility and completing a diversion activity.

Objective

From January 2017, the Department of Health and Human Services will deliver the Children’s Court Youth Diversion service (CCYD) in all Children’s Courts across Victoria. 

From April 3 2017, delivery of this service will transfer to the Department of Justice and Regulation.

CCYD will ensure consistent and equitable access to diversion for young Victorians early in their contact with the Children’s Court.

CCYD provides an opportunity for eligible children and young people appearing before the Children’s Court to:

  • address harm caused by their offending by taking responsibility and completing a diversion activity
  • address the underlying causes of their offending
  • where required, receive assistance to engage with support services
  • on the successful completion of the diversion activity have the charge/s dismissed, with a non-disclosable criminal record for the offence/s subject to the diversion order
  • avoid the stigma associated with a criminal record and its impact on future life opportunities.

CCYD complements the existing suite of options available to divert children and young people from further progression into the criminal justice system.  Options include pre-court (cautions, Youth Support Service), pre-plea (bail supervision, Ropes) and post-plea (deferral of sentence, Youth Justice Group Conferencing and sentencing).

Eligibility

CCYD will target children and young people with little or no criminal history who would otherwise be sentenced to an outcome not requiring supervision with the youth justice service. Prior to CCYD most would leave court without an intervention to assist them to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes to manage their lives effectively without further offending. There are no exclusions regarding the nature or type of offence, rather the young person’s history and circumstances of their offending will be considered in determining whether diversion is appropriate.

Legislation

Section 59 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2009 applies in the Children’s Court by virtue of section 528 of the Children Youth and Families Act 2005, which states the Children’s Court has the powers of the Magistrates’ Court. Section 59 requires both the prosecution and the accused to consent to the court adjourning the proceeding for the accused to participate in and complete a diversion activity. Internal guidelines for prosecutors set out the agreed policy position that, in Children’s Court matters, Victoria Police will only withhold consent where they have serious concerns.  

Intervention

Diversion is an evidence-based intervention informed by research that shows over-intervening with low risk offenders can increase their risk of reoffending. Diversion orders provide a brief intervention that is tailored to a young person’s individual circumstances and proportionate to the circumstances of the offence/s before the court.

CCYD coordinators will attend all scheduled sittings of the Criminal Division of the Children’s Court to:

  • conduct same-day assessments following a magistrate’s referral 
  • advise the court on suitability for diversion
  • report back to the court on a young person’s compliance with the court’s direction.

When asked by the court to assess a young person’s suitability for diversion, the CCYD coordinator will consult with the young person, their family or carer, Victoria Police prosecutors and legal representatives.  A diversion order may contain a range of conditions for the child or young person. Conditions will be underpinned by the principles of diversion and targeted to promote reparation of harm caused by the offence/s. CCYD coordinators will manage risks identified through assessment and by engaging supports to promote the completion of a diversion activity. The intervention will build on and strengthen a young person’s existing relationships and interests, engaging them in the context of their family or carer and their community to promote positive change.

Contact CCYD

Central email: ccyd@justice.vic.gov.au

REGION

 OFFICE LOCATION

COURTS

 

Loddon Mallee

Bendigo

74-78 Queen Street, Bendigo VIC 3550

Tel: (03) 5434 5555

 

Bendigo

Echuca

Castlemaine

Maryborough

Mildura

253 11th Street Mildura

Tel:  50 223111

 

Mildura

Robinvale

Swan Hill

Ouyen

Kerang

North West Metropolitan

 Fitzroy

145 Smith Street, Fitzroy

Tel: (03) 9412 5341 or 1300 360 408

Broadmeadows

 

Preston

679-685 High Street, Preston

Tel: 1300 664 977

Heidelberg

Neighbourhood

Justice Centre,

Collingwood

Footscray

71 Moreland Street, Footscray

Tel: 1300 360 462

Werribee

 

Sunshine

Address: 16-18 Hertford Road, Sunshine

Tel: (03) 9229 4100

 

Sunshine

 

Grampians

 

Horsham

21 McLachlan Street, Horsham

Tel: (03) 5381 9777

 

Hopetoun

Horsham

Edenhope

Nhill

St Arnaud

Stawell

Ballarat

Cner Mair and Doveton Street, Ballarat

Tel: (03) 5333 6530

Ararat

Ballarat

 

Barwon South West

Geelong

Level 2, State Government Offices, 30-38 Little Malop Street (corner of Fenwick Street and Little Malop Street), Geelong

Tel: (03) 5226 4540

Colac

Geelong

Warrnambool

Shop 2, 109 Lava Street Warrnambool Tel: (03) 5561 9444

 

Hamilton

Warrnambool

Portland

 

Gippsland

Bairnsdale

7 Service Street, Bairnsdale

Tel: (03) 5150 4500

 

Bairnsdale

Lakes Entrance

Omeo

Orbost

 

Morwell

9-11 Hazelwood Road, Morwell

Tel: (03) 5136 2400

Traralgon

8-12 Seymour Street, Traralgon

Tel: (03) 5177 2500

Morwell

Wonthaggi

 

South East Metropolitan

 

Dandenong

165-169 Thomas St, Dandenong

Tel: (03) 8765 5444

Dandenong

 

Frankston

431 Nepean Highway, Frankston

Tel: (03) 9784 3280

Frankston

Moorabbin

Ringwood

25 Ringwood Street, Ringwood

Tel: (03) 9871 5199

Ringwood

Box Hill

883 Whitehorse Road, Box Hill

Tel: (03) 9843 6000

 

Box Hill

Hume

Seymour

Level 1, 8-10 Elizabeth St, Seymour

Tel: (03) 5771 1600

Shepparton

163 Welsford Street, Shepparton

Tel: (03) 5832 1500

Cobram

Seymour

Shepparton

Wangaratta

43-47 Rowan Street, Wangaratta

Tel: (03) 5722 0555

Wodonga

55 Hovell St, Wodonga

Tel: (02) 6055 7777

Benalla

Corryong

Mansfield

Myrtleford

Wangaratta

Wodonga

 

 

Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander flags

The department acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the Traditional Custodians of the land and acknowledges and pays respect to their Elders, past and present.