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Nt Youth Justice Class Action

Find out more about this class action, important updates, details and documents, whether you're eligible to join and how to register.

Settlement

You're part of this class action if you were held in a Northern Territory youth detention centre between 1 August 2006 and 27 November 2017. 

In this class action, Aaron Hyde and Dylan Jenkings claimed compensation money from the NT Government for young people who were in youth detention, because officers illegally used too much force, handcuffing, strip-searching and isolation (in the back cells) on detainees.

The NT Government agreed to pay compensation money to people who are part of this case.

Read more about this story by scrolling down this page.


Important documents

Settlement Notice - Summary (including in Kriol, Yolŋu Matha, Warlpiri and Pitjantjatjara)

🔈 Listen to this story in Yolŋu Matha and in Kriol 


How to register your claim

Click here to register online. You must register your claim by 31 July 2022.

If you need help, call us on 1800 226 211 (free call). We can also get an interpreter to help.
You can also join our Facebook group if you are part of this class action:

Call Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
1800 226 211 (this number is free to call)

Text Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
0472 881 058 (Normal costs apply)

Email Maurice Blackburn Lawyers at: 
NTJustice@mauriceblackburn.com.au

 

Call Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
1800 226 211 (this number is free to call)

Text Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
0472 881 058 (Normal costs apply)

Email Maurice Blackburn Lawyers at: 
NTJustice@mauriceblackburn.com.au

 

What is this class action legal case about?

This class action was started in 2016 in the Federal Court of Australia by Aaron Hyde and Dylan Jenkings, represented by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers. We call it the NT Youth Justice Class Action.

In Court this class action is called Dylan Riley Jenkings & Anor v Northern Territory of Australia and it is case number NTD64/2016.

In this class action Aaron and Dylan said that young people were illegally treated badly in Northern Territory youth detention centres between 1 August 2006 and 27 November 2017. There were about 1,200 young people in youth detention in that time.  All of these people are part of this class action.

Aaron and Dylan said that the illegal, bad treatment they and other young people suffered in youth detention was:

  • assault and battery – by too much strip searching and handcuffing or other restraints, or being threatened, roughly treated or bashed by officers; and
  • false imprisonment – by being held in isolation (in the back cells).


Aaron and Dylan claimed compensation money from the NT Government for everyone in the class action for this illegal, bad treatment.

The NT Government has now agreed to pay compensation money in this class action without needing a trial.  This is called a ‘settlement’. More on this is in the next sections. 

 

Am I a part of this class action legal case?

You are part of this class action if you were held in a Northern Territory youth detention centre between 1 August 2006 and 27 November 2017. This means you are a Class Member.


What do I need to know about this ‘settlement’?

The NT Government has agreed to pay compensation money to people in this class action without needing a trial.  This is called a ‘settlement’.

The NT Government agreed to pay $35 million for compensation money and the costs of running the class action.

On 15 December 2021 the Judge approved the settlement to say it is fair for everyone in the case.

When the Judge approved the settlement, her Honour also set the amount of legal costs that can be paid.  Before that, these costs were checked by an independent costs expert to make sure they are fair.

The NT Government does not admit that officers acted illegally. But it has apologised for the way young people were treated in youth detention:

On 17 November 2017, following the delivery of the findings of the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory, Chief Minister Michael Gunner publicly apologised for the failings of successive Northern Territory Governments in their responsibility to care for, protect and build children in youth detention.

He also said: 

“I am sorry for the stories that live in the children we failed. Youth justice is supposed to make our kids better, not break them.”

 


How much compensation money will I get?

You will only get money if you were in an NT youth detention centre, between 1 August 2006 and 27 November 2017.

How much compensation money each person gets will depend on 3 things:

  • How long they were in youth detention for, between 1 August 2006 and 27 November 2017;
  • What happened to them in youth detention; and
  • How many other people register to claim compensation money – there are about 1,200 people in the class action.


This means compensation money might be different for each person.

We will get everything we need to work out each person’s compensation money from the NT Government.  But everyone in the case needs to register their claim by 31 July 2022.

People can call us to check what the NT Government has told us about their time in youth detention. See 'Where can I find out more?' for how to contact Maurice Blackburn.

In about April 2022, we will start telling people who have registered how much compensation money they will get. Then people can ask us to check it again and make sure they are getting the right money.



How can I know if this compensation money is fair?

The compensation money can only be paid because a Judge of the Federal Court has approved it to say it is fair. 

The Judge also has to check and approve the way the compensation money for each person will be worked out.  The Judge has to say this is fair. 

The Judge has also approved the way the compensation money for each person will be worked out to say this is fair. 

What do I need to do? 

If you want to claim compensation money you must register by 31 July 2022.  If you do not register by then you will not get any compensation money.

Click here to register. 

 

 


Where can I find out more?

Contact Maurice Blackburn Lawyers:

📞 Call Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
1800 226 211 
(This number is free to call)

📱 Text Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on:
0472 881 058
(Normal costs apply)

👍 Join the Facebook Group
(only for people in the class action)
You can ask questions and see answers to questions from other people in the class action

Click here to join the group

📪 Write to Maurice Blackburn Lawyers at:
NT Youth Justice Class Action
Maurice Blackburn Lawyers
PO Box A266
SYDNEY SOUTH, NSW, 1235

📧 Email Maurice Blackburn Lawyers at: 
NTJustice@mauriceblackburn.com.au


If you’re not sure what to do, talk with your lawyer as soon as you can.


Settlement Notice Documents

Settlement Notice - Summary (including in Kriol, Yolŋu Matha, Warlpiri and Pitjantjatjara)

This letter is to tell you that the time for registrations has been extended to 31 July 2022. If you have already registered you do not need to register again. Compensation will now be paid from about June 2022.

Listen to this story below.

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News

Media statement
Maurice Blackburn settles class action over mistreatment of young people in NT youth detention for $35m
Social justice law firm Maurice Blackburn has secured a $35 million class action settlement on behalf of young people mistreated while in youth detention in the Northern Territory.

In the news - ABC News 
Federal Court judge orders 'very large' NT youth justice class action settlement figure be made public
A Federal Court judge has ordered the settlement figure the Northern Territory government has agreed to pay former youth justice detainees be made public.

In the news - ABC News
Northern Territory youth detention class action being resolved, payouts could apply to 1,200 detainees
The Northern Territory government has agreed to compensate up to 1,200 former detainees who were mistreated in youth detention facilities, the Federal Court has been told.

In the news - Four Corners
Four Corners Documentary: Australia's Shame

In the news - Royal Commission Final Report
Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory

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