$15m for safe houses for NT youth on bail

Lucy Hughes Jones

Vulnerable Northern Territory kids on remand will have access to improved bail support accommodation as part of new measures to reduce recidivism.

The Labor government will invest $15.3 million in safe houses to support young people awaiting trial and keep them out of jail.

"Often they don't have a home they can go to or feel safe at, and they quickly reoffend and find themselves back in youth detention," Territory Families Minister Dale Wakefield said.

"We do not want to see them become adult criminals and spend their lives committing crime - we need to break the cycle."

The NT has the highest rate of youngsters behind bars and Ms Wakefield said the government needs to overhaul the broken youth justice system.

"This bail support will be backed up by our 54 new Youth Outreach Workers who graduate next week," she said.

This team will work with children and their families to provide support and programs to address the causes of their behaviour and get them on the right path, she said.

It comes as the juvenile justice royal commission resumes hearings on Monday to examine policing, bail and remand issues.

The inquiry will also hear evidence relating to diversion programs and youth justice conferencing while getting the perspectives of prosecutors and defence lawyers.

NT budget papers delivered on Tuesday reveal the cost of the commission, which is jointly funded by the NT and federal governments, has blown out by $4 million to $54 million.