I stepped off the plane this week, finding myself in an oppressive third world country. It was dirty and I felt shame seeing the suffering continue and I was gob smacked when I received the water bill. Whilst I was away and my house was empty I accumulated over $200 worth of charges which included shifting my ‘shit’ at $38 and services charges of almost $130. I also saw my regulars struggling, received numerous phone calls for assistance and watched another family fall apart. On the bright side a highly respected veterans advocate friend of mine saved a veteran’s life.
I was back in a third third world country – that country was Australia, my Australia!
Dozens of children are likely to spend Christmas behind bars in the Northern Territory’s infamous Don Dale youth detention centre, four years after the government agreed to close it. Inmate numbers climbed to 44 in recent months after the NT government toughened youth bail laws earlier in the year. Darwin lawyer John B Lawrence SC is representing an 11-year-old Indigenous boy on remand in the former men’s prison. “It’s disgusting that a child so young is in custody and away from his family over the holidays,” he said on Wednesday. “But it’s a fact and it’s appalling that we accept and let this happen in Australia”.
Indigenous people are still far more likely to be jailed, die by suicide and have their children removed than non-Indigenous people a year after the new Closing the Gap agreement was signed, according to the Productivity Commission.
Now, the 2021 Australian Constitutional Values Survey by CQUniversity and Griffith University shows over 60% of Australians remain in favour of a First Nations Voice to parliament in some form.
Indigenous women are discouraged from reporting domestic violence by fear of having their children removed and the threat of being left homeless.Reluctance to report family violence ‘a lot worse than we thought’
And so, there are mining companies and then there are mining companies. If the sacking of executives at Rio Tinto was an act of contrition, it was at least a step in the right direction. It won’t, however, solve the power imbalance with Indigenous community relations. But FMG’s latest decision is incredibly tone-deaf. It speaks to a parochial desire to deny the sanctity of this place, which many traditional owners recognise and which many non-Indigenous citizens also support.‘Twiggy’ refuses to rule out destruction of Aboriginal sacred sites
Appreciation for Aboriginal art, music and other cultural values has already spread the world over. Might opening these doors wider offset the losses felt by mining giants from denying the destruction of Sacred Sites? Please join your voice to the outcry and help our great country finally save our First Peoples’ Churches, Political Offices, Historical Libraries and Burial Grounds for future generations.
Aboriginal leaders say they are dismayed and disappointed by the proposal to appoint Tony Abbott as special envoy on Indigenous affairs to the Federal Government.
You can read the story here or watch it below, but do it on an empty stomach. In the meantime, here are the facts that Arfier left out of the story, all of which I and many others have reported countless times over the last decade, apparently to limited affect.
Mulrunji Doomadgee was beaten to death on the floor of the Palm Island police station on November 19, 2004 for singing ‘who let the dogs out’ at Senior Sergeant Chris Hurley, the most senior officer on the island and a man almost twice the size of Mulrunji (Hurley was six foot six and weighed 115kg, Mlurunji less than 80kgs).
As Mulrunji lay dying, another Aboriginal man in the cell tried to comfort him and yell for help from Hurley and other officers. His screams were ignored.
When Mulrunji’s family arrived at the police station later that morning to enquire why he had been arrested, he had already been dead for hours. Hurley lied to the family and told them he was fine, but unavailable.
an estimated minimum 100,000 of First Nations people having been to prison. In comparing global data, it is the highest rate of racialised incarceration in the world.
Mr Pearson said: “We’ve made progress in the last 50 years but some of the profound indicators of our problems – children alienated from parents, the most incarcerated people on the planet Earth, and youths in great numbers in detention – obviously speak to a structural problem.” [Emphasis added].
Is that right?
Australian Bureau of Statistics data show that the Indigenous incarceration rate in 1991 was 14.4 per cent. It was 27.4 per cent in 2015. It was even higher during 2016: 28 per cent.
Indigenous People still amount to 3 per cent of the population in Australia.
A car decorated with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags was denied entry to this week’s Anzac Day parade on Bribie Island.
Anzac Day is an opportunity to confront our violent frontier past and its shadow today, writes Dr David Stephens.
YASSMIN ABDEL-MAGIED, a young Somali-Australian Muslim woman, was driven out of Australia last year after she implied that the Anzac sacred cow might be ready to graze new territory.
‘Lest. We. Forget. (Manus, Nauru, Syria, Palestine … )’
I thought she was on the right track and I said so, copping some of the bilious and vicious response that she herself received. Yet surely, after a century, we can move beyond dead soldiers and broaden the remembrance focus to other weighty matters, where Australians bear some responsibility and where they should have some interest in making things right.
Such a matter is right in front of us.
Amnesty is highlighting state and territory laws and policies which violate the rights of children, like mandatory sentencing in Western Australia. Amnesty has already successfully fought for changes to the law in Queensland which restores the detention of children to a last resort and ensure children are not held in adult prisons.
The Abbott government bungled its overhaul of billions of dollars worth of Indigenous funding, a major report finds.
The ABC has axed the Friday broadcast of the 7.30 program just under two years after it replaced the eight state-based editions of the show.