The government-appointed advocate for children has blasted Premier Mark McGowan for his commentary on Banksia Hill Detention Centre detainees, saying the rhetoric criminalises and demonises children who may not even be found guilty of a crime.
“People are put on remand by the courts, so the courts make those decisions and they are left there because often the crimes for which they are accused are extremely serious,” he said.
“I’ve met people who say there shouldn’t be any detention, that somehow people are not responsible for their actions, I fundamentally disagree. You have to have some sort of consequence.”
McGowan has continually defended his government’s and Corrective Service Minister Bill Johnston’s handling of the youth justice system despite significant pressure from advocates concerned at the treatment of detainees.