All of us at the Neighbourhood Justice Centre acknowledge the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation the Traditional Owners of the land on which our centre sits, and we pay respect to Wurundjeri Elders past, present and emerging.  We treat all that this acknowledgement stands for with the utmost gravity.  

Place-based justice

The Neighbourhood Justice Centre has one overarching goal: make the places we live, work, and raise families safe and resilient through compassionate, tailored and appropriate justice solutions.

This is the foundational goal of community justice, and so it is ours.  

Who we are

The Neighbourhood Justice Centre started as a three-year experiment in something called community justice in 2007.  Well over a decade later, we're still providing the residents of our local community with holistic, tailored justice solutions.

Our Centre is one-stop-justice in that we comprise the three arms of justice (police, courts, and corrections), a raft of support services agencies, and crime prevention-focused community engagement teams.

We are the venue for a Magistrates’ Court, the Children’s Court (criminal division), the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal, and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (residential tenancies) that serve our local government area, the City of Yarra.

Our onsite support services provide case-by-case treatment and support to anyone who comes before our court to address any of the life issues that tend to accompany offending behaviour. We also support victims to get back on their feet.

We also run programs to address crime and harm at a broader level, so to this end we run conflict resolution programs, give citizens impacted by crime and harm a place to turn to, and work with other government services and support agencies.

And behind the scenes, we develop programs and technical solutions that improve access to justice.

We are part of the Specialist Courts and Programs Division of the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria, and our authorising environment is the Courts Legislation (Neighbourhood Justice Centre) Act 2006 (the Act).

We are one of 80 community justice centres worldwide and as an International Mentor Court for Community Justice our doors are open to share our work and model with justice reformers, policy-makes, courts and allied services.

And finally, we are proud to be modelled on Red Hook Community Justice Center, in Brooklyn, New York, an inspiring leader in community justice.

Our goals

  • Prevent and reduce criminal and other harmful behaviour in our community
  • Increase our community's confidence in, and access to, the justice system 
  • Strengthen the community justice model and facilitating the transfer of its practices to other courts and communities.

You can read more about our goals here.

Strategic objectives

As outlined in our Strategic Plan:2019–23, our five focus areas are to:

  • Provide accessible justice solutions to make the City of Yarra even safer and stronger 
  • Continue with practices that make us a recognised and valued community justice model 
  • Remain a connected and trusted partner
  • Research and develop justice innovations 
  • Grow as a passionate, skilled and cohesive organisation.

Under one roof

Multi-jurisdictional court and tribunals

  • Magistrates' Court 
  • Children's Court (criminal division)
  • Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
  • Victims of Crime Tribunal

Client services

  • Social services, including mental health issues, housing, drug and alcohol addiction, financial difficulties, family violence, men's behaviour issues, and homelessness. 
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, the LGBTI community, and refugee and migrants.

Legal and justice agencies 

  • Victoria Legal Aid
  • Fitzroy Legal Services
  • Community Correctional Services Victoria.

Program and Innovation team

  • Oversees crime prevention, community engagement, stakeholder engagement and education initiatives and develops innovative programs in response to identified community needs.

"One of our clients called the NJC her ‘home away from home’. When we help one person, we help the community."  Jeff, Case Worker.