The Directorate is responsible for reviewing and developing policy and legislation across the justice and community safety portfolio.
Our law enforcement regime maintains the public safety and social order of the community.
A variety of organisations and programs come together to identify and respond to crime, safety and justice priorities.
Information about the ways we promote, support and protect rights.
All about the Human Rights Act, how it works and the review process.
FOI gives members of the community a legally enforceable right to access documents held by government.
Access to a range of emergency response information.
Our emergency response framework.
Members of our community who respond in emergencies.
Safety considerations and information for personal and family wellbeing.
How we keep our community safe.
Information about the Infrastructure Safety and Security Grants Program.
Business obligations for safe workplaces.
Keeping ACT Government assets and information secure.
A national approach to security preparedness and planning.
How we keep safe on ACT roads.
The Directorate is responsible for legislation dealing with commercial regulation in the ACT.
In the ACT there are rights and responsibilities that regulate how business owners, their staff and their customers interact.
The Office of Regulatory Services undertakes activities to ensure compliance to regulations.
The Directorate educates the ACT community and industry on regulatory functions and obligations.
The Directorate is responsible to the Attorney-General, the Minister for Police and Emergency Services, the Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations and the Minister for Corrections.
The Directorate plays a vital role in providing information and advice to the Minister and supporting ACT representation in national fora.
The Directorate's responsibility for government activities of justice administration, rights protection, business regulation and emergency services.
ACT Corrective Services delivers adult correctional and detention services.
ACT Courts and Tribunal deliver justice through sentencing in criminal cases and rulings in civil cases.
The ACT Emergency Services Agency is responsible for emergency management planning and response.
The ACT Government Solicitor provides legal advice and services to the ACT Government and its agencies.
The Legislation and Policy Branch provides policy advice and research services to develop ACT policies and legislation.
The Office of Regulatory Services undertakes registration and business regulation functions.
The Parliamentary Counsel’s Office provides legislative drafting and publishing services for ACT legislation.
Policing services in the ACT are purchased from the Australian Federal Police.
The Security and Emergency Management Branch is responsible for protection and emergency planning for all hazards, including counter-terrorism.
A number of independent statutory agencies are administered under the portfolio umbrella of justice and community safety.
Victim Support ACT provides specialised assistance to help victims of crime participate in the justice process.
The Director of Public Prosecutions provides independent and effective criminal prosecution services.
Elections ACT is responsible for conducting elections and referendums for the ACT.
The ACT Human Rights Commission promotes the human rights and welfare of people living in the ACT.
The Public Advocate protects the interests, rights and dignity of vulnerable people and those with a disability.
The Public Trustee provides independent, professional trustee and asset management services.
The Work Safety Commissioner promotes and educates stakeholders on matters relating to workplace safety in the ACT.
Media information relating to the justice and community safety portfolio.
This section details the ways to contact the Department as well as agency locations.
This section provides access to our searchable database of publications.
Restorative justice (RJ) is a structured process that allows the exchange of information between the people most affected by an offence – the victim, their family and friends and the offender and their family and friends. This process gives people the opportunity to talk about:
These exchanges can take the form of face-to-face meetings or by indirect methods such as third party mediation, taped recordings or letter exchanges. These exchanges of information are called conferences.
RJ is a community based response to crime that emphasises the consequences of an offence and holds the offender responsible for an act of wrongdoing. It focuses on the personal involvement of the offenders, victims and the community.
It is a process that allows victims to:
Essentially this means that victims are given a voice about what happened to them. They are listened to and supported through this process by those who are most important to them - their family, friends and others close to them. Having family and significant others hear about what happened to them and understand the impact of an offence upon them is of great value to victims. The process also helps to empower victims to regain their confidence, optimism and sense of safety. It provides victims with information to help them understand the offence and their response to it.
Victims benefit by being able to form an agreement with the offender about what the offender needs to do to repair the harm that has been done to them. If victims want an apology, financial reparation or some commitment from the offender about the future, RJ gives them the opportunity to ask for it.
The process gives a person who has offended the opportunity to:
RJ helps to reconnect people and relationships. It gives the opportunity to disapprove the offending behaviour while identifying the offender as a good person. Focusing on the harm caused, rather than the person, reduces the potential for labelling and denigration of the offender. Research has shown that it can also reduce reoffending.
Offenders are assisted to accept responsibility for the harm they have caused and be involved in finding ways to repair that harm. The process helps them to rebuild relationships with other significant people in their life by showing they are accepting responsibility for their behaviour and trying to repair the harm.
RJ has been criticised as a soft option, relevant only to first-time offenders and useful only as a diversionary tool. Scientifically valid research has shown that RJ can reduce offending and can have its strongest impact on serious crimes, violent crime and prolific offenders. The research is very clear on the benefits for victims and their supporters.
Restorative justice processes can be very powerful and alter the way that people subsequently feel and behave. They are also very challenging for offenders as there is nowhere to hide in a conference - offenders face the people they have harmed, the victims, the victim’s supporters and their own family.