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No More Kids in Detention

The Australian Greens are calling on Labor to end the detention of children after six youths were taken to hospital following a fight between a group of teenagers at Pontville Detention Centre in Tasmania.

Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said this was the second incident in less than a month and was ample evidence that children needed to be put into families in the community.

"Keeping children in detention is shocking," Senator Christine Milne said.

"If you lock up 279 boys between the ages of 14 and 18 who have already gone through a huge amount of trauma, and if you put them behind the wire, it's hardly surprising you are going to have an incident or two like this.

"We need to get these children out of detention immediately and into the community.

"One good news story that Tasmania can really be proud of is the fact the Australian Greens, working with Tasmanian Greens Minister Nick McKim, have been able to get Pontville kids out from behind the wire and into Polytechnic, Cosgrove High School and Claremont College.

"Tasmania has shown that in spite of Labor's attitude to keeping children in detention, and with the leadership of the Greens, we can support these children and offer them an education.

"As a mother, as a parliamentarian, and as a former teacher the best thing we can do for these children is to get them out of detention, not just here in Pontville, but right around Australia."

Tasmanian Senator Peter Whish-Wilson said keeping children in detention was cruel and tragic.

"When I visited Pontville it was incredibly sad to see all those boys detained in a confined area and not being able to socialise in the community - it's not surprising that tensions arise," Senator Whish-Wilson said.

"These boys have come from desperate circumstances and the best thing for these children is to be with families in the community, which can be achieved at a much lower cost than keeping them behind wire.

"Every day a child is in detention is one day too many.

"Tasmania should be proud that we've taken the first steps to getting these boys into schools and out into the community where they belong."

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