Department of Communities and Justice

The New South Wales Department of Communities and Justice, a department of the Government of New South Wales, is responsible for the delivery of services to some of the most disadvantaged individuals, families and communities; and the administration and development of a just and equitable legal system of courts, tribunals, laws and other mechanisms that further the principles of justice in the state of New South Wales, Australia. It also provides services to children and young people, families, people who are homeless, people with a disability, their families and carers, women, and older people. The department is the lead agency of the Stronger Communities cluster of the New South Wales government.[2]

Department of Communities and Justice
Department overview
Formed1 July 2019 (2019-07-01)
Preceding agencies
JurisdictionNew South Wales
HeadquartersSydney, New South Wales, Australia
Ministers responsible
Department executive

The department was formed on 1 July 2019 following the 2019 state election that saw the formation of the second Berejiklian ministry. The department assumed most of functions from the former Department of Family and Community Services, and the former Department of Justice.[3] The new department was originally meant to be named Department of Family, Community Services and Justice when announced on the gazette in April 2019, but was changed to its current name in June 2019.[1][4]

Governing legislation

Adult correctional operations are governed by the Crimes (Administration of Sentences) Act 1999. Other relevant laws include the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (NSW), Crimes Act 1900 No 40 (NSW), Crimes (Interstate Transfer of Community Based Sentences) Act 2004 (NSW), Protected Disclosures Act 1994 No 92 (NSW), Summary Offences Act 1988 No 25 (NSW), Prisoners (Interstate Transfer) Act 1982 No 104 (NSW), and Parole Orders (Transfer) Act 1983 No 190 (NSW).

Juvenile justice operates under the terms of the Children (Detention Centres) Act 1987 (NSW), the Children (Community Service Orders) Act 1987 (NSW), the Young Offenders Act 1997 (NSW), and the Children (Interstate Transfer of Offenders) Act 1988 (NSW).


DCJ is made up of seven divisions, including:

  • Courts, Tribunals and Service Delivery, which supports the work of the State's Supreme Court and subordinate courts and tribunals
  • Corrections, which manages prisons and supervises offenders in the community, such as parolees and those sentenced to community service
  • Child Protection and Permanency, District and Youth Justice Services, which manages child protection, foster care, adoption and juvenile detention centres
  • Housing, Disability and District Services and Emergency Management, which provides services to people experiencing homelessness or disability, and communities facing natural disasters
  • Law Reform and Legal Services, which includes the State's Director of Public Prosecutions

These are supported by a Strategy, Policy and Commissioning and a Corporate Services division.

Each division is led by a deputy secretary (the deputy secretary for Corrections is known as the Commissioner of Corrective Services). The deputy secretaries report to secretary Michael Coutts-Trotter.[5]


The following ministers are responsible for the administration of the department and its agencies:[1]

All ministers were appointed with effect from 2 April 2019; however Mark Speakman has served as Attorney General since 30 January 2017. Ultimately the ministers are responsible to the Parliament of New South Wales.

Agencies administered

The following agencies are administered by the department:[1]

See also


  1. "Administrative Arrangements (Administrative Changes—Public Service Agencies) Order 2019 [NSW] (159)" (PDF). Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales. 2 April 2019. p. 7-8. Retrieved 4 April 2019.
  2. "About us". NSW Department of Justice. Archived from the original on 9 July 2019. Retrieved 9 July 2019.
  3. "Administrative Arrangements (Administrative Changes—Public Service Agencies) Order 2019". NSW Legislation.
  4. "Administrative Arrangements (Administrative Changes—Miscellaneous) Order 2019". NSW Legislation. 28 June 2019. Retrieved 9 July 2019.
  5. "Department of Communities and Justice - Executive Structure" (PDF). NSW Department of Communities and Justice. Retrieved 26 September 2019.
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