I am a parent of two Aboriginal boys. When they were 12 or so I
sat them down and had the talk with them. Not the birds and the
bees talk, the interacting with police talk. I am probably not the
only parent of black children to have this talk with their
children, and nor will I be the last.
This talk consisted of how to behave, not to let the police
anatagonise them into anger, call me immediately if they were taken
by the police and above all else, not to talk to them without me
If you are reading this you may be assuming the police would
only be speaking to my children if they have done something wrong.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. Because of racial
profiling (refers to the discriminatory practice by law enforcement
officials of targeting individuals for suspicion of crime based on
the individual’s race, ethnicity, religion or
national origin) my children everyday become targets for
I am not over reacting; the statistics of Aboriginal
imprisonment rates are a major factor in me telling my children to
use the utmost caution around the police. Below are the statistics
of young people in prison 2013 – 2014.
It is incredibly hard to look at these charts and not infer
racial profiling from the results.
When if you are an Aboriginal person standing in front of a
jusdge, you are 12 – 29 percent more likely to receive a custodial
sentence than a non Aboriginal person for the exact same
As of June 30 There were 9,885 adult prisoners in Australian
prisons who identified as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, a
7% increase (620 prisoners) from 30 June 2014 (9,265
Mick Gooda, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social
Justice Commissioner, who wrote the foreward on Aboriginal justice