11 Dec 2010

Judge backs review of young people in police cells

12:02 pm on 11 December 2010

The head of the Youth Court says the announcement of a review of the practice of holding young people in police cells has come at just the right time.

The review is being carried out to meet obligations under a section of of the United Nations Convention Against Torture which New Zealand joined in 2007.

It will be done by the Independent Police Conduct Authority, the Children's Commissioner and the Human Rights Commission.

Principal Youth Court Judge Andrew Becroft says about 300 young people per year were being held in adult remand cells for up to six days at a time in the mid-2000s.

While the problem was solved at the time, he says there has since been some slippage.

Judge Becroft says it started getting worse again last May, but Child, Youth & Family know about it and are trying to make sure the practice is stopped.