Statement on the new location for the Youth Justice Facility
On 15 March I joined the Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos and Wyndham Mayor Henry Barlow to announce a new location for a youth justice facility. The new location is west of Werribee, in the vicinity of CherryCreek.
Last month, the Government committed to examining alternative sites with Wyndham City Council for the new facility within Wyndham, as long as they met the strict selection criteria and statutory obligations. Community representatives acknowledged the need for a new youth justice facility in Wyndham but had concerns about the location of the Hoppers Lane South site and its proximity to the Werribee tourism precinct.
The Government has worked closely with Wyndham City Council to identify an alternative site that meets the needs of the community and the selection criteria in the business case and legislation. The Cherry Creek site, which is owned by Melbourne Water, was not considered surplus and so was not considered as part of the original examination of available government land. The Cherry Creek site meets the requirements, including the size and shape of the land, its proximity to the CBD including court facilities, its accessibility for staff and families, its distance from residential areas and the ability to acquire the land from Melbourne Water promptly and get started on construction.
You may have seen advertisements calling for nominations for the local Community Advisory Group for this project. I strongly encourage those wanting to participate and be involved in this project to put forward a nomination by visiting: engage.vic.gov.au/youthjusticecentre
Similarly, the Government is holding information sessions for this project and we hope that you will attend and learn more about the planned facility and the Cherry Creek location. These sessions will be at the following dates and times:
Friday 7 April, 4pm-7pm
Saturday 8 April, 9am-12pm
Jamieson Way Community Centre
59 Jamieson Way
Point Cook 3030
This $288 million youth justice facility is part of comprehensive changes to the youth justice system in Victoria to make it more secure and to provide greater protections for staff, young people in contact with the system, and the wider community. The project will still be delivered within the existing timeframes and budget.
It will be of significant boost to locals and the local economy, generating more than 2000 jobs during construction and providing 450 ongoing employment opportunities.
Many of you took the time to write to my office and I thank you and all of the Wyndham community for the passion and care that you have demonstrated.
I thank the Wyndham City Council and representatives of community groups who worked with the Government to find a suitable alternative location.
Again I encourage you to attend community information sessions to find out more about the facility. Further information is available from the dedicated youth justice centre information line on 1800 630 738 or at www.dhhs.vic.gov.au.