Latest release

Corrective Services, Australia

National and state information about adult prisoners and community based corrections, including legal status, custody type, Indigenous status, sex.

Reference period
June Quarter 2021
Released
16/09/2021
Future Releases
  • Next Release 25/11/2021
    Corrective Services, Australia, September Quarter 2021
  • Next Release 10/03/2022
    Corrective Services, Australia, December Quarter 2021
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Key statistics

  • 43,073 prisoners were in custody, up 3% (1,289) from the June quarter 2020.
  • 15,219 prisoners in custody were unsentenced, up 5% (660) from last quarter and 10% (1,384) from the June quarter 2020.
  • 78,785 persons were serving community-based corrections (CBC) orders, up 2% (1,256) from last quarter and down 2% (1,626) from the June quarter 2020.

There have been government restrictions in place across the states and territories due to COVID-19 since March 2020. The restrictions may have had an impact on criminal activity and the justice system.

Persons in custody

There were 43,073 (average daily number) prisoners, up from:

  • 42,633 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 41,784 in the June quarter 2020.

Of the 43,073 prisoners, there were:

  • 13,191 in New South Wales, up 1% for the quarter;
  • 9,954 in Queensland, up 2%;
  • 7,262 in Victoria, up 1%;
  • 6,726 in Western Australia, up 1%;
  • 3,119 in South Australia, up 1%;
  • 1,802 in the Northern Territory, down 1%;
  • 644 in Tasmania, up 4%; and
  • 375 in the Australia Capital Territory, down 7%.
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(a) Based on average daily number

Imprisonment rates

The imprisonment rate was 215 persons per 100,000 adult population, up from:

  • 213 persons in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 210 persons in the June quarter 2020.

The imprisonment rate per 100,000 adult population was:

  • 974 persons for the Northern Territory, down 1% for the quarter;
  • 327 for Western Australia, up 1%;
  • 249 for Queensland, up 2%;
  • 223 for South Australia, up 1%;
  • 207 for New South Wales, up less than 1%;
  • 150 for Tasmania, up 3%;
  • 139 for Victoria, up 2%; and
  • 112 for the Australian Capital Territory, down 7%.
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(a) Rate is the number of prisoners per 100,000 adult population. Based on average daily number.

Sex

Of all prisoners:

  • 92% (39,768) were male; and
  • 8% (3,305) were female.

Of all male prisoners, there were:

  • 31% (12,327) in New South Wales;
  • 23% (9,020) in Queensland; and
  • 17% (6,846) in Victoria.

Of all female prisoners, there were:

  • 28% (933) in Queensland;
  • 26% (864) in New South Wales; and
  • 20% (656) in Western Australia.

The imprisonment rate for male prisoners was 405 persons per 100,000 adult male population, up from 401 persons last quarter.

The imprisonment rate for female prisoners was 32 persons per 100,000 adult female population, stable for the quarter.

Type of custody

Of all prisoners, there were:

  • 83% (35,834) in secure custody; and
  • 17% (7,239) in open custody.

Legal status

35% (15,219) of the 43,114 prisoners (first day of the month) were unsentenced, up from:

  • 14,559 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 13,835 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all unsentenced prisoners, there were:

  • 30% (4,590) in New South Wales;
  • 21% (3,178) in Victoria; and
  • 20% (3,024) in Queensland.

64% (27,793) of the 43,114 prisoners (first day of the month) were sentenced:

  • up from 27,709 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 28,367 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all sentenced prisoners, there were:

  • 31% (8,597) in New South Wales;
  • 25% (6,862) in Queensland; and
  • 17% (4,621) in Western Australia.
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(a) Based on average number on the first day of the month

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners

There were 13,062 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners, up from:

  • 12,886 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 12,301 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners:

  • 27% (3,570) were in New South Wales, 27% (3,480) were in Queensland, and 21% (2,689) were in Western Australia;
  • 90% (11,805) were male; and
  • 63% (8,291) were sentenced.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rates

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rate was 2,406 persons per 100,000 adult Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, up from:

  • 2,373 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 2,325 in the June quarter 2020.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rate for male prisoners was 4,395 persons per 100,000 adult male Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, up from 4,338 persons last quarter.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rate for female prisoners was 458 persons per 100,000 adult female Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, up from 450 persons last quarter.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rate per 100,000 adult Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population was:

  • 3,836 for Western Australia, stable for the quarter;
  • 2,851 for the Northern Territory, down 1%;
  • 2,624 for South Australia, down 1%;
  • 2,360 for Queensland, up 3%;
  • 2,013 for New South Wales, up 2%;
  • 1,934 for Victoria, up 2%;
  • 1,768 for the Australia Capital Territory, down 2%; and
  • 788 for Tasmania, up 10%.
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a) Rate is the number of prisoners per 100,000 adult Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population. Based on average daily number.

Federal sentenced prisoners

There were 1,151 federal sentenced prisoners, up from:

  • 1,126 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 752 in the June quarter 2020.

78% (903) of all federal sentenced prisoners were held in New South Wales and Victoria.

Community-based corrections

There were 78,785 persons serving CBC orders:

  • up from 77,529 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 80,411 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all persons serving CBC orders, there were:

  • 36,548 in New South Wales, up 3% for the quarter;
  • 18,760 in Queensland, up 3%;
  • 8,189 in Victoria, down 2%;
  • 5,837 in Western Australia, down 1%;
  • 5,214 in South Australia, stable;
  • 1,957 in Tasmania, stable;
  • 1,272 in the Northern Territory, up 1%; and
  • 1,008 in the Australian Capital Territory, down 5%.
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a) Based on average number on the first day of the month

Rates for persons in community-based corrections

The rate of persons serving CBC orders was 393 persons per 100,000 adult population:

  • up from 387 persons in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 405 persons in the June quarter 2020.

The rate of persons serving CBC orders per 100,000 adult population was:

  • 687 persons for the Northern Territory, up 1% for the quarter;
  • 572 for New South Wales, up 3%;
  • 469 for Queensland, up 3%;
  • 456 for Tasmania, stable;
  • 372 for South Australia, stable;
  • 301 for the Australian Capital Territory, down 5%;
  • 284 for Western Australia, down 1%; and
  • 157 for Victoria, down 2%.
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a) Rate per 100,000 persons for the state/territory of interest.

Sex

Of all persons serving CBC orders:

  • 81% (63,488) were male; and
  • 19% (15,253) were female.

The rate for male persons serving CBC orders was 646 persons per 100,000 adult male population, up from 637 persons last quarter.

The rate for female persons serving CBC orders was 149 persons per 100,000 adult female population, up from 147 persons for the quarter.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons serving CBC orders

There were 17,844 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons serving CBC orders, up from:

  • 17,459 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • 17,229 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons serving CBC orders, there were:

  • 45% (7,979) in New South Wales;
  • 28% (4,963) in Queensland; and
  • 9% (1,677) in Western Australia.
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(a) Based on average number on the first day of the month.

Type of CBC orders

There were 54,862 Sentenced probation orders:

  • up from 53,562 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 55,153 in the June quarter 2020.

There were 17,615 Parole orders:

  • up from 17,451 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 17,854 in the June quarter 2020.

There were 13,054 Community service orders:

  • up from 12,688 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 14,136 in the June quarter 2020.
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a) Based on average number on the first day of the month
* Data for this CBC order type are not available or not applicable for certain jurisdictions

Prisoner receptions

The total number of prisoner receptions was 16,139:

  • down from 16,481 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • up from 14,624 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all prisoner receptions:

  • 30% (4,767) were in New South Wales, 21% (3,347) were in Queensland, and 18% (2,962) were in Victoria;
  • 87% (14,069) were male; and
  • 79% (12,688) were unsentenced.
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(a) Total number of prisoner receptions.

Prisoner releases

The total number of prisoner releases was 16,196:

  • up from 15,346 in the March quarter 2021; and
  • down from 17,365 in the June quarter 2020.

Of all prisoner releases:

  • 29% (4,763) were in New South Wales, 20% (3,316) were in Queensland, and 18% (2,961) were in Victoria;
  • 87% (14,111) were male; and
  • 55% (8,963) were sentenced.
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(a) Total number of prisoner releases.

For information about corrective services data, please refer to the Methodology.

Data downloads

Corrective Services datacubes

Data files

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 4512.0.