Law & Justice

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 10 of 235
  • (2007) Cunneen, Chris; Mitchell, M.; Casey, J.
    Book Chapter
    Policing in Indigenous communities is an issue that demands attention to a range of broad political, socio-economic, cultural and historical contexts, as well as the more mundane matters of police operational concern. Given the complexity of the topic, this chapter will be selective and, from necessity, concentrate relatively briefly on a few key themes. They include the following: · The background to the contemporary relationship between police and Indigenous people. · A discussion of some of the key drivers for reform including the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCADIC), and more recently Aboriginal Justice Advisory Councils (AJACs) and the development of Aboriginal Justice Agreements. · A discussion of some of the key policing approaches specific to Indigenous communities such as Aboriginal liaison officers and Aboriginal community police. · A discussion of some of the key interface issues between police and community including the development of Indigenous community justice mechanisms.

  • (2007) Cunneen, Chris; Gillespie, N.
    Book Chapter
    The long list of shocking cases of Aboriginal deaths in custody exposed by the Royal Commission provided a public understanding of the processes of racism in the criminal justice system and Australian society more generally. The stories of the deaths in custody were the incontrovertible stories of institutional racism, of human tragedy and monumental inhumanity. Some cases showed profound callousness, others simple indifference. The current tragedy is that so many of the circumstances leading to deaths in custody, and identified by the RCADIC, are still routine occurrences. At the broadest level, the political conditions of the late 1990s and the new century have not been conducive in Australia to effective reform of the criminal justice system. There is little doubt that we have moved into a more punitive period in relation to criminal justice responses, and whatever impetus there was to reform in the early 1990s has largely evaporated. We see this drift into ‘law and order’ responses manifested in a range of areas including increased police powers, ‘zero tolerance’ style laws which increase the use of arrest for minor offences, greater levels of bail refusal and longer periods of imprisonment for a range of offences. However, on the positive side there has been a renaissance in Indigenous justice institutions. These provide the potential for significant change in the criminal justice system, and an opportunity for greater recognition of the aspirations of Indigenous people.

  • (2007) Cunneen, Chris; Johnstone, J.; Van Ness, D.
    Book Chapter
    This book chapter demonstrates that simple dichotomies contrasting pre-modern indigenous restorative justice with modern state-centred systems of justice are not necessarily helpful. Indigenous societies were, and are, complex and their processes for dealing with crime and social disorder cover a range of possible responses from the restorative to the retributive. In the chapter, it is argued that a context of hybridity is a more useful representation to consider contemporary developments, where new forms of doing justice are developed which merge the restorative in new practices. The flexibility of new justice practices may accommodate indigenous justice demands, but are not necessarily the same as indigenous practices. Yet as indicated in this chapter there is also a ‘dark’ side to a developing hybridity. Restorative justice has found itself a partner to a greater emphasis on individual responsibility, deterrence and incapacitation. Criminal justice systems that bifurcate by dividing offender populations between the minor offenders and serious repeat offenders have only a limited vision of restorative justice, and indigenous and other minorities are likely to be fast-tracked towards the hard end of the system. There are positive examples of indigenous/state processes merging in a hybrid way and which do respect indigenous claims for greater self-determination and control. In the examples of the indigenous courts and community justice groups we see the justice system reconfigured with different and more restorative values. However, it is also necessary to understand that processes like circle sentencing and indigenous courts exist within a broader state-based legal framework that still prioritise a range of considerations within sentencing. Further, we need to be clear that some indigenous laws and practices do not comply with generally recognised human rights standards. This is not an argument against restorative justice or indigenous justice. It is an argument for considering how we might deal with these conflicts.

  • (2008) Cunneen, Chris; Salter, Michael
    Conference Paper
    Conducted by the Crime and Justice Research Network and the Australian and New Zealand Critical Criminology Network

  • (2007) Cunneen, Chris
    Journal Article
    This article suggests that the processes for establishing a more coherent approach to Indigenous law and order are being put in place, however, these gains need to be defended and supported against the renewed ascendancy of a discourse of barbarism and primitivism about Indigenous people within current federal policies.

  • (2011) Muir, Kristy; Goldblatt, Beth
    Journal Article
    United Nation’s conventions exist to help facilitate and protect vulnerable people’s human rights: including people with disabilities (Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 2006) and children (Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989). However, for some families where a family member has a disability, there may be inherent conflicts in meeting stand-alone human rights’ conventions. These conventions should work together to ensure that young people with disabilities and challenging behaviour and their parents and siblings all have equal rights to full participation in social, economic and civic life. Yet service system deficits mean that this is not always the case. This paper argues that governments need to provide a whole of family and community support approach to ensure the human rights of all family members are met. This is a complex ethical, moral and human rights issue that needs addressing by disability scholars and the disability community.

  • (2007) Cunneen, Chris; Barclay, E.; Donnermeyer, J.; Scott, J.; Hogg , R.
    Book Chapter
    This chapter considers three issues: the nature of crime and victimisation in Indigenous rural and remote communities; the responses of the Anglo-Australian criminal justice system to Indigenous crime and justice issues; and the potential for developing and strengthening Indigenous responses to crime. In brief, the rural and remote nature of Indigenous communities influences the social and spatial dynamics of crime. Further, government responses have varied depending on the nature of the Indigenous and non-Indigenous community. In many respects remote Indigenous communities have tended to have less consistent intervention by justice and welfare agencies, while ‘mixed’ rural communities where Indigenous people comprise a significant minority have tended to have a much stronger law and order presence aimed at controlling Indigenous populations. A further dynamic has been recent work in Indigenous communities aimed at developing localised governance structures to enable communities to deal more effectively with crime prevention and more effective models of sanctioning and rehabilitation (often drawing on various alternatives seen to be more appropriate for Indigenous control).