WGAR News: Deaths in custody on conscience of all Australians - Save the CNS: ALS News

Newsletter date: 8 June 2013

Contents:

* Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT): Deaths in custody on conscience of all Australians: Save the CNS

* Gerry Georgatos, The Stringer: Deaths in Custody - when will something be done?
* The Stringer: WA imprisons 300 Aboriginal people each year for driving offences
* Gerry Georgatos, The Stringer: NT's third-world prisons - a national disgrace
* Gerry Georgatos, The Stringer: CCC inquiry into police lock-up bashing

* Greens Senator Penny Wright: Greens say books not bars for Territory youth
* Greens Senator Penny Wright: Justice Reinvestment - a pathway to safer, stronger communities

* NIRS: Peak bodies tell NT Gov't: Alcohol a health issue [not a criminal issue]

* Background to Justice Reinvestment, Aboriginal imprisonment and Deaths in Custody

* ABORIGINAL LEGAL SERVICE (NSW/ACT): DEATHS IN CUSTODY ON CONSCIENCE OF ALL AUSTRALIANS: SAVE THE CNS

- News

Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT): ALS News: Deaths in custody on conscience of all Australians: SAVE THE CNS
http://www.alsnswact.org.au/news_items/85
29 May 13: "Since the start of the Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT)’s Custody Notification Service in 2000, not one Aboriginal person has died in a police station in NSW or the ACT. The Custody Notification Service (CNS) ensures every Aboriginal man, woman or child detained in police custody in NSW and the ACT has access to a trained lawyer over the phone before being asked to participate in investigative procedures. They receive legal advice about their rights. The lawyer can advocate on their behalf. And importantly, the question is asked "are you okay?""

See:

WGAR News: Greens Jamie Parker MP: NSW government refuses funding for live-saving Aboriginal legal advice line (1 Jun 13)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2013/05/31/wgar-news-suicide-prevention-strategy...

WGAR News: Petition: "Stop Aboriginal deaths in police custody by saving the Custody Notification Service" (15 May 13)
http://indymedia.org.au/2013/05/14/wgar-news-stop-aboriginal-deaths-in-p...

* GERRY GEORGATOS, THE STRINGER: DEATHS IN CUSTODY - WHEN WILL SOMETHING BE DONE?

- Analysis / Opinion

The Stringer: Deaths in Custody - when will something be done?
http://thestringer.com.au/deaths-in-custody-when-will-something-be-done/
6 Jun 13: "The horrific deaths in custody of Mr Ward (in the back of a prisoner transport van), of Mulrunji (in a Palm Island Police cell) and of John Pat (bashed to death in Roebourne) expose systemic flaws, neglect, arrogance and racism. These three deaths are not standalone as unjustifiable deaths in custody - there are many more horrific custodial deaths that should have been deemed as unjustifiable or preventable. ... On September 28, John Pat’s mother, Mavis, his brother Glen and his sister Maisy will grieve his loss thirty years to the day." By Gerry Georgatos, a life-long human rights and social justice campaigner, a multi-award winning investigative journalist

- Upcoming Event

Event: 28 September 2013: Melbourne, Vic
Melbourne - Thirty Years But Still No Justice!
National Day of Action to Stop Aboriginal deaths in custody!
Remember John Pat and the hundreds
who have died in custody since!
"Support these demands made by John Pat’s mother,
Mavis Pat:
* An apology from the WA government for my son’s death in custody
* An ex-gratia payment as compensation
* That the police officers involved need to be brought to
account and a re-opening of the coronial inquiry
into my son’s death ... "
Organised by:
Indigenous Social Justice Association - Melbourne
Event details: http://isja-msg.com/coming_events.htm
Event details: http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/54006
Event details: http://indymedia.org.au/2013/05/02/historic-national-stop-deaths-in-cust...
Event details: http://www.facebook.com/events/232079390250476/
Analysis: http://thestringer.com.au/deaths-in-custody-when-will-something-be-done/
WGAR Background to Aboriginal imprisonment and Deaths in Custody: http://indymedia.org.au/2012/12/17/background-to-aboriginal-imprisonment...

* THE STRINGER: WA IMPRISONS 300 ABORIGINAL PEOPLE EACH YEAR FOR DRIVING OFFENCES

- Analysis / Opinion

The Stringer: WA imprisons 300 Aboriginal people each year for driving offences
http://thestringer.com.au/wa-imprisons-300-aboriginal-people-each-year-f...
6 Jun 13: "At long last something is being done to reduce the high imprisonment rates of minor offenders –but there is still a long way to go. Bits and pieces programs are being invested in to cut rates with specific types of offending, instead of a whole approach investment in drastically reducing various minor offending rates. $5.5 million will be invested from Western Australia’s Royalties for Regions scheme into driving training and licensing for Aboriginal peoples in regional and remote areas. The Aboriginal Legal Services WA CEO Dennis Eggington applauded the investment as a positive step."

* GERRY GEORGATOS, THE STRINGER: NT'S THIRD-WORLD PRISONS - A NATIONAL DISGRACE

- Analysis / Opinion

The Stringer: NT's third-world prisons - a national disgrace
http://thestringer.com.au/nts-third-world-prisons-a-national-disgrace/
2 Jun 13: "The Northern Territory prison system, challenged only by Western Australia’s, is in disarray, with a tragic record in deaths in custody according to the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC). Prison reform advocates have long described NT prisons as third-world, overcrowded and institutions that ensure high rates of re-offending. The recent AIC report on the overall deaths in custody in Australia, the National Monitoring Report on Deaths in Custody (NMRDC) found that the NT has the highest rate of Indigenous deaths in custody in the nation." By Gerry Georgatos, a life-long human rights and social justice campaigner, a multi-award winning investigative journalist

* GERRY GEORGATOS, THE STRINGER: CCC INQUIRY INTO POLICE LOCK-UP BASHING

- Analysis / Opinion

The Stringer: CCC inquiry into police lock-up bashing
http://thestringer.com.au/ccc-inquiry-into-police-lock-up-bashing/
2 Jun 13: "Video footage from the Broome Police Station apparently caught out a 31 year old police constable allegedly bashing an Aboriginal man. Thirteen police officers from the Broome Police Station have been summonsed by the Corruption and Crimes Commission (CCC) to testify in an inquiry after the footage was viewed by the CCC. ... Only weeks ago the Australian Institute of Criminology annual report on Deaths in Custody found that there had been little improvement for Aboriginal peoples since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody ... " By Gerry Georgatos, a life-long human rights and social justice campaigner, a multi-award winning investigative journalist

* GREENS SENATOR PENNY WRIGHT: GREENS SAY BOOKS NOT BARS FOR TERRITORY YOUTH

- Media Release

Greens Senator Penny Wright: Greens say books not bars for Territory youth
http://penny-wright.greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/greens-say-b...
30 May 13: "The NT Government has prioritised incarceration over education by rejecting the Gonski school reforms while pouring money into the bottomless pit of jail funding, say the Australian Greens.
Australian Greens spokesperson on Education and Legal Affairs Senator Penny Wright said low levels of literacy and numeracy among jailed youth showed this was the wrong approach.
"Chief Minister Adam Giles says the NT can't scrape together $106 million over six years for a better future for Northern Territory kids," Senator Wright said.
"But he has been able to find half a billion dollars for a new prison which will be overcrowded from the day it opens. Funding jails is a bottomless pit unless you take steps to change the reasons people end up there.
"$106 million also happens to be exactly the net operating expenditure and capital costs of running the Northern Territory's jails for one year.
"So I say to Mr Giles if he wants to find a cost-saving measure, have another look at the Gonski reforms. ... "

* GREENS SENATOR PENNY WRIGHT: JUSTICE REINVESTMENT - A PATHWAY TO SAFER, STRONGER COMMUNITIES

- Background

Greens Senator Penny Wright: Justice Reinvestment - a pathway to safer, stronger communities
http://penny-wright.greensmps.org.au/justice-reinvestment
"Over the last 30 years, the number of people in Australian prisons has tripled to around 30,000. This places a massive $3 billion cost-burden on Australian taxpayers every year.
In reality, the real price of prison is much higher. Offending and imprisonment have enormous social costs for victims and offenders, their families and their communities.
If Australia's prison population continues to grow at an average rate of 4% per year, across the nation we'll need to add at least 10,000 new beds to the prison estate by 2020 at an estimated cost of over $5 billon. The Greens say let's be smarter with the way we spend this money.
Justice Reinvestment is a new but proven approach to criminal justice spending. The success of Justice Reinvestment in the United States has shown it is possible to have both less crime and fewer people in prison. The Greens want to see Justice Reinvestment adopted here in Australia too.
Justice Reinvestment can:
* Reduce crime & improve public safety;
* Strengthen communities; and
* Save money.
Win, Win, Win."

- Related News

Australian: Rethink call to keep kids away from crime
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/indigenous/rethink-call...
4 Jun 13: "THE nation's first National Children's Commissioner has called for a radically different approach to justice to get Aboriginal children out of contact with the criminal system." Patricia Karvelas

* NIRS: PEAK BODIES TELL NT GOV'T: ALCOHOL A HEALTH ISSUE

- Audio

National Indigenous Radio Service: Peak bodies tell NT Gov't: Alcohol a health issue
http://www.nirs.org.au/blog/NEWS/article/29360/Peak-bodies-tell-NT-Gov%2...
6 Jun 13: "A coalition of peak Aboriginal bodies in the Northern Territory has prepared its submission to the NT Government on its mandatory alcohol treatment policy. The paper provides evidence showing issues in alcohol management are a health concern and argues the Government will criminalise people with drinking problems by sending them off to mandatory treatment."

- Related Audio

Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
http://caama.com.au/radio#tabs-6
http://caama.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/am-7-06.mp3
7 Jun 13: "Repeated call for the Giles CLP Government to shelve its plans for mandatory rehabilitation and work with all relevant stakeholders to get alcohol policy right."

Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
http://caama.com.au/radio#tabs-6
http://caama.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/am-4-06.mp3
4 Jun 13: "THE Northern Territory Chief Minister says proposed three month mandatory alcohol treatment will also apply to a large number of non indigenous Territorians ... and the legislation is not just for Aboriginal people."

Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
http://caama.com.au/radio#tabs-6
http://caama.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/am-3-06.mp3
3 Jun 13: "Growing opposition to the Northern Territory Governments proposed mandatory alcohol rehabilitation program with the Australian Council of Social Services labelling the draft legislation "obscene" and "half-baked"."

* BACKGROUND TO JUSTICE REINVESTMENT, ABORIGINAL IMPRISONMENT AND DEATHS IN CUSTODY:

Last updated: 1 June 2013

http://indymedia.org.au/2012/12/17/background-to-aboriginal-imprisonment...

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