Australian-first youth justice program promises dramatic reduction in re-offending

A model with more than 40 years of evidence in reducing youth justice reoffending, Functional Family Therapy – Youth Justice (FFT-YJ), will now run in Victoria until June 2021 after an additional $3.2 million of funding was announced by Ben Carroll, Minister for Youth Justice.

The prevention and intervention program for at-risk adolescents and their families is delivered in the family home, with the aim to reduce the likelihood of a young person being in trouble with the legal system.

The FFT-YJ program is being implemented in Melbourne’s North and Western suburbs by Anglicare Victoria. Working to get families back on track, these FFT-YJ practitioners are the first to operate in Australia.

Paul McDonald, CEO of Anglicare Victoria said:

“FFT-YJ has been successful in reducing recidivism with young offenders from a range of backgrounds by 50 per cent, as compared to alternative family treatment. I want to congratulate Minister Carroll and the Victorian Government for making this significant investment in Youth Justice and extending this trial.

“More young people are remaining in the family home and are not being re-remanded to custody or entering the out-of-home care system. This is a win-win-win. A good outcome for the young person, a good outcome for the family and a good outcome for the community.

“Strong outcomes are already being seen in the short time the program has been in operation in Australia. I have confidence that this program has the potential to curb youth re-offending, not only in Victoria, but on a national scale.”


To coordinate an interview with Paul McDonald, or for any other requests, please contact:

Sarah Baird, Senior Media Advisor at Anglicare Victoria:

P: 9412 6173       M: 0419 035 117

E: media@anglicarevic.org.au or sarah.baird@anglicarevic.org.au

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