Details of the widespread use of ‘spit hoods’ in the Adelaide Youth Training Centre have been released today in a report published by the South Australian Ombudsman.
The use of spit hoods has been illegal in all other jurisdictions following the Royal Commission and Board of Inquiry into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory in 2016.
Today, in an interview with the ABC program PM, solicitor Peter O’Brien, from O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors, encouraged young people to consider legal action against detention centre operators and the state of South Australia if they have experienced this form of restraint.
“The use of this mechanism is barbaric and contrary to the obligations that Australia has under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. The Royal Commission in the Northern Territory highlighted the serious issues that arise from the use of such mechanisms of restraint, including the impact on a child’s capacity for reform and rehabilitation” he said.
“Regrettably the Royal Commission in the Northern Territory did not go far enough. If people that had abused children, as documented in the inquiry, had been charged and required to face justice for their actions, other States might have been less likely to implement or carry on such procedures. Unfortunately, this did not happen and the recommendations from that Royal Commission remain unimplemented in the main”, said Mr O’Brien.
Please contact us on (02) 9261 4281 if you or someone you know are in need of legal advice or representation from a lawyer experienced in dealing with possible use of illegal restraint by law enforcement or correctional authorities, such as spit hoods. Alternatively, you can leave us a message through our online contact form. We are specialists in juvenile justice and children’s court.
To listen to Peter O’Brien and others speaking about the use of spit hoods to to the interview with the ABC program PM here.