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Monday, 26 November 2018
Page: 11567

Law Enforcement

(Question No. 1135)

Ms Sharkie asked the Attorney-General, in writing, on 19 September 2018:

Will the Government formally respond to Australian Law Reform Commission Report No.133 Pathways to Justice—Inquiry into the Incarceration Rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples (28 March 2018) before the end of 2018; if not, why not, and in which month will the Government formally respond..

Mr Porter: The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The report by the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) provides valuable insight into the issues that contribute to the over representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia's prisons. The Government will respond to the report in due course.

Most of the laws and legal frameworks which contribute to Indigenous incarceration fall within state and territory jurisdictions, and as such implementation of the majority of the recommendations is a matter for consideration by them.

The Commonwealth's focus remains firmly on the underlying disadvantage that puts Indigenous Australians at risk of coming into contact with the criminal justice system in the first place, including improving outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians in a range of areas such as employment, education, health and families.