The deaths in custody of two more First Nations people over the past week — bringing the total deaths to seven over the last two months — is nothing less than a national emergency, writes Isaac Nellist.
1991 Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody
Large and angry protests were held in several cities across the country to mark 30 years since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody handed down its findings, reports Isaac Nellist.
First Nations organisations have strongly criticised the NT government’s proposals to get “tough” on young people who re-offend, saying it will drive more Aboriginal children into prison, writes Pip Hinman.
People rallied in rain at the opening of a NSW parliamentary inquiry into Aboriginal deaths in custody, reports Peter Boyle.
John Pat’s death in custody was remembered 37 years after the 16-year-old died of head injuries in a police cell in Roebourne in 1983, reports Kerry Smith.
The family of Gamilaraay, Gumbaynggirr and Wakka Wakka man Tane Chatfield say the criminal justice system was responsible for his death, reports Rachel Evans.
No one ever wishes to witness a 17-year-old boy impaled on an iron fence. “A freak accident,” the coroner declared, exempting NSW police who denied chasing TJ Hickey in 2004.
Young Aboriginal man David Dungay jnr died on December 29, 2015 after pleading for his life in the mental health wing of Sydney’s Long Bay jail.
The 26-year-old Dunghutti man from Kempsey, a known diabetic, suffered a cardiac arrest when he was pinned down by four members of the prison’s Immediate Action Team (IAT) for refusing to stop eating biscuits and injected with two strong sedatives. He was due to be released three weeks later.
Family and supporters of the Whittaker family gathered outside NSW Parliament on December 6 to demand justice for Eric Whittaker who died in custody in July.
Eric died, shackled to a hospital bed. The horrific nature of his treatment in custody has only come to light because a photo of him lying manacled and unconscious was only recently given to the media.
Diane Whittaker, one of Eric’s aunts, told protesters that there had been a failure in duty of care and that people had to be held responsible for the cruelty shown her nephew.
The declaration: We call on NSW Parliament to:1 Release all Aboriginal People on remand for non-violent crimes 2. Review of all Aboriginal People Incarcerated. There is a clearly biased system of Blak people being put on remand for crimes. White people get a warning for, or a fine for or bail for. Fighting In Resistance Equally (FIRE) will be calling on the NSW State Government to release all black people on remand and an investigation into why black people get much longer sentences than white people for similar crimes. Hosted by FIRE Fighting In Resistance Equally.
@ Sydney Town Hall, 483 George St Sydney
It took years of grassroots campaigning in the 1980s to force the Hawke government to acknowledge the appalling rate at which Aboriginal people were being killed by police and prisons.That government ignored almost all the 339 recommendations made by that Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. We urge all peoples of this land to unite in solidarity and call for real justice that will end the killings in custody. Hosted by FIRE Fighting In Resistance Equally. Ken Canning 0423 732 094
- stop deaths in custody
- build communities not prisons
- ensure prison is the last resort option