Delivering smarter justice for safer Territory 24 November

NT Government

Amendments to the Sentencing Act 1995 passed by Parliament tonight are part of the Territory Labor Government’s plan to deliver smarter justice for a safer Territory.

The legislation reforms mandatory sentencing and mandatory non-parole periods for a limited range of offences (excluding murder, sexual offences, and assaulting a police officer or emergency worker).

It also introduces enforced corrections orders towards holding offenders accountable, breaking the cycle of reoffending, and prioritising victim safety and support.

These are:

Enforced Community Corrections Orders – apply to lower level offending that does not warrant imprisonment. These orders can be imposed for up to two years and are served in the community, with conditions including supervision, community work, and program participation; andEnforced Intensive Community Corrections Orders – custodial orders served in the community that apply to more serious offending. These can be imposed with or without actual terms of imprisonment. Orders can apply for up to two years and include mandatory supervision, and other conditions such as residential/movement restrictions, and electronic monitoring.

Government will now work with victim services, health, NT Police, and the community to co-design behaviour change programs that address offender’s behaviour and protect victims.

The new legislation commences in the second half of 2023.

Quotes attributable to Attorney General and Minister for Justice Chansey Paech:

“We are delivering a smarter justice system that will improve community safety, protect victims of crime and hold offenders to account.

“The reforms give judges more sentencing options to address offenders’ behaviour and break the cycle of crime. Judges can still sentence offenders to periods of imprisonment.

“The reforms have been developed in response to a review of mandatory sentencing and community-based sentencing options by the Northern Territory Law Reform Committee.”

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