Latest statistics show youth justice system is working

  • The latest Youth Justice Indicators Summary report has been released today.
  • The number of children who offended each year over the past decade has decreased from 4292 to 1791.
  • The number of young people who offended decreased from 11,557 to 5,765, across the same time period, despite the inclusion of 17-year-olds in the Youth Court since July 2019.
  • Offending rates for children and young people has decreased by 63% and 64% respectively since 2011/2012.

New statistics released today show a continued decline in youth offending over the past decade, Justice Minister Kiri Allan says.

“These statistics are evidence the youth justice system is continuing to work as intended for most children and young people.” Kiri Allan said.

“It’s pleasing that the concerted effort over the past 10 years has seen a significant reduction in youth offending, which is a testament to the joint work of successive governments, government agencies and the community.”

The report also showed a small increase in police proceedings against children in 2021/22 compared to 2020/21.

“The increase was not driven by more children offending but because those that have offended did so more often. This reveals what we already know, there is a small number of high risk children with complex needs who we need to continue to work with to reduce their offending.

The data, captured by the Ministry of Justice, Police and Oranga Tamariki, was collated up until June 2022.

“Since then, we have seen a spike in some youth offending, which will be captured in next year’s data.

“To respond to this, the Government introduced a number of measures, which are showing very promising results in reducing reoffending.

“Research consistently shows us that youth offenders have complex needs and factors which increase the risk of offending behaviour are cumulative. Many of these factors were compounded during the pandemic, particularly in Auckland.

“The Government is determined to continue to address these needs, which evidence shows is the best way to address youth offending and make our communities safer,” Kiri Allan said.


The Youth Justice Indicators Summary Report can be found here.