Justice Reinvestment Program

Closed 14 Apr 2023

Opened 23 Feb 2023


More than 30 years after the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, First Nations peoples remain over-represented at every point in the criminal justice system.

On 25 October 2022, the Australian Government announced a commitment to pursue meaningful change by investing in place-based initiatives, led and implemented by First Nations communities and organisations, to help turn the tide on incarceration and deaths in custody.

Through the October 2022–23 Budget, $81.5 million will be invested in up to 30 justice reinvestment initiatives across the country.  Justice reinvestment allows communities to identify the best way to prevent and reduce contact with the criminal justice system. It also empowers them to make decisions about the policies, programs and decisions that affect their lives.

This commitment includes ongoing funding of $69 million in grants funding from 2022–23, and $12.5 million from 2022–23 to establish an independent National Justice Reinvestment Unit to coordinate and support justice reinvestment initiatives at a national level.

The Attorney-General’s Department and the National Indigenous Australians Agency, through a joint First Nations Justice Taskforce, are stewarding the implementation of this commitment.

The First Nations Justice Taskforce  is proudly partnering with the Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research to facilitate national design consultations on the National Justice Reinvestment Program and an independent National Justice Reinvestment Unit. The partnership with the Jumbunna Institute will ensure First Nations knowledge and expertise are central to the design and delivery of this historic commitment.

Design consultations for the government’s National Justice Reinvestment Program and independent National Justice Reinvestment Unit are underway and will ensure all communities have an opportunity to apply for funding in an open and transparent way from July 2023.

The discussion paper below outlines the next steps to implement this commitment, as well as guiding principles and key questions for its delivery.

The Jumbunna Institute has also prepared a Community Resource to assist communities considering and responding to these questions.

Why your views matter

The government welcomes submissions from interested organisations, communities and individuals to inform the design of the National Justice Reinvestment Grants Program and the structure and operation of the independent National Justice Reinvestment Unit.

Your submission will help to ensure the Unit and program are accessible and effective in supporting community-led justice reinvestment across Australia.

Have your say

To make a submission, you can complete our online questionnaire on areas that are of interest to you, your community, or your organisation.

To make an online submission, click on 'Make a submission' below and navigate through the survey questions.

You do not need to answer every question. You are welcome to only respond to those questions that are relevant to you, your organisation, or your community.

If you have any questions about this consultation process or would like to discuss your submission, please contact justicereinvestment@uts.edu.au or justicereinvestment@ag.gov.au.

Publishing submissions

The Attorney-General’s Department is collecting your personal information in this consultation process for the purpose of designing a future justice reinvestment program, and independent National Justice Reinvestment Unit.

Your participation in design consultations, or in responding to this discussion paper, is voluntary. You can submit your response under your name, the name of your organisation, or anonymously.

We intend to publish responses at the conclusion of the consultation period, where we have received permission to do so. However, we reserve the right to leave unpublished any submission, or part of a submission, particularly those that provide identifying details. There is a consent question in the survey to confirm whether you agree to your response being made public.

Information received in response to this discussion paper will also be shared with our design partner, the Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research, University of Technology (UTS). If you consent to your responses being made public (anonymously or in your name), they may also be referenced in reports prepared by Jumbunna Research on the design and consultation process.

If you choose not to provide us with your personal information we may be unable to contact you about the consultation, however we will still consider your comments.


  • Government
  • Criminal law