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As a deterrent

Jailing is failing as a deterrent. 61% of all people in prison in Australia have been in prison before. There has been a dramatic increase in the numbers of people in prison with prior incarceration – up 45% over the last decade.

In 2022-23, 43% of people released from prison in Australia returned to prison within two years. It is clear from both the recidivism rate and the prior incarceration rates that imprisonment for adults in Australia does not work to prevent further contact with the criminal justice system.  The threat of imprisonment does not reduce the likelihood of people committing crime.