Security bolstered at Brisbane Youth Detention Centre

Published Friday, 14 July, 2017 at 01:42 PM

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Minister for Training and Skills
The Honourable Yvette D'Ath

Construction work is well underway to support the security upgrade to Brisbane Youth Detention Centre (BYDC) as part of a $15 million investment by the Palaszczuk Government.

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath said the significant investment was a testament to the Government’s commitment to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the young people in detention and the staff who supervise and support them.

“Managing young people in detention is very complex, and the environment can at times be volatile and present major challenges for staff,” Mrs D’Ath said.

“In light of recent events at both the Brisbane and Cleveland youth detention centres it is important these facilities have first class security systems in place to support the safe management of staff and young people in youth detention settings.

“The current security management system at the BYDC was installed back in 1999 and, compared to systems available today, is relatively antiquated.

“This new security overhaul will focus on upgrading all hardware and software systems for door monitoring, electronic door monitoring, CCTV monitoring and recording systems, and perimeter alarms.

“Enhanced oversight of electronic operating systems such as fire alarms and intercoms will also be part of the improvement.”

There have been 10 lockdowns at BYDC this year, and $356,480 has been spent repairing and improving damaged areas to reduce further incidents.

Mrs D’Ath said the security upgrade, expected to be completed by December 2019, would complement other initiatives being rolled out to deter further incidents occurring at the detention centres.

It follows the Palaszczuk Government accepting all of the Independent Review of Youth Detention’s recommendations to improve practices and services.

“Both the Brisbane and Cleveland youth detention centres are currently undergoing infrastructure upgrades including improved design,” she said.

“Areas of focus include roof top access points, building access, glass security, door reinforcement and staff safety areas.

“Enhanced intelligence processes have also been introduced and staff have received further specialised training in protective equipment in order to protect themselves and more effectively diffuse tense situations before they escalate.

“Furthermore at the Cleveland Youth Detention Centre, changes have been made to the way in which young people are accommodated while the units have been redesigned to improve the management of the more difficult individuals.”

Media Contact: Kirsten MacGregor 0417 675 917