keywords: Prisons

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Hugo Weaving's grief and healing

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 08 May 2014

    Weaving's latest character is inspired by a real-life minimum-security prison officer whose daughter had died. This man helped develop a program for rehabilitating injured raptors, that would be overseen by prisoners as part of their own rehabilitation. 'The program encapsulated the positive side,' says Weaving, 'of someone trying to deal with their own grief, and healing himself by setting up a kind of living memorial to his daughter.'

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia's days of the dead

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 28 April 2014
    20 Comments

    ANZAC Day is a powerful and worthy ritual. But the tales of our soldiers make up only one of the ongoing chapters in the story of our country. There are many others. On 25 January, let us remember the Indigenous people who once nurtured the land. On 25 February, let us remember those who gave their lives in settling this unforgiving land. On 25 March, let us remember the people who lost their lives migrating to this country.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The dawning of the Age of Unpleasantness

    • Brian Matthews
    • 28 February 2014
    7 Comments

    Joe Hockey's idea of an age of entitlement is shallow and facile. Announcing the end of an 'age' is just another way of obscuring the truth that you haven't the faintest idea what the hell is going on, or that you suspect what's going on but not how to influence, redirect or stop it. So you fall back on this persuasive notion of a great shift in the times. The next 'age' for those whose entitlement is disappearing will be marked by unpleasantness.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Obama's cannabis defence illuminates NSW booze laws

    • Ruby Hamad
    • 03 February 2014
    7 Comments

    In a nation still divided bitterly along race lines, blacks, and to a lesser extent Hispanics, bear the brunt of America's prisons-for-profit program. The perils of mandatory sentencing should serve as a warning to NSW, which has announced mandatory minimum sentences as a response to alcohol-fuelled violence. The question is not which drug is more dangerous, but how society chooses to deal with each one and why.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Bikie laws sicken civil liberties

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 28 October 2013
    18 Comments

    Political commentator Malcolm Farr, a bike enthusiast, noted that many bikies are indeed 'frauds', 'thugs' and 'grubs'. The medicine on offer in Queensland and other states, however, is bound to kill that frail patient known as civil liberties. What is being touted is a police state response, rather than a measured, legal program. And broad brush strokes in legal responses tend to be disastrous.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Human stories of criminal monsters

    • Joe Caddy
    • 25 October 2013
    19 Comments

    For 11 years I worked as a chaplain in a maximum security prison. I would meet inmates who were accused of serious crimes that had shocked the community. In coming to know those who stood accused I came to see that they too had a story. More often than not it included enormous deprivation and sadness. They had relationships that they cherished, and I never met anyone who in their heart did not want their circumstances to be better.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Relationships key to mental illness treatment

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 10 October 2013
    9 Comments

    Although medical and psychological discoveries and better regulation have improved the treatment of mental illness in Australia, the need still outweighs the resources available. People with mental illnesses need others to help them build and develop relationships if they are to thrive. But the same trends that help the better treatment of people also tell against the crucial building of relationships.

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  • MARGARET DOOLEY AWARD

    The ethics of paternalism in Aboriginal policy

    • Callum Denness
    • 25 September 2013
    3 Comments

    Following the abuse received by Adam Goodes from a teenage spectator in the AFL's Indigenous round, and the subsequent remarks made by Eddie McGuire, the country became embroiled in a debate about racism in modern Australia. Meanwhile, the Northern Territory introduced its Mandatory Alcohol Treatment Bill which, if passed, will see more Aboriginal people incarcerated. We were too busy describing the modern face of racism to notice.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Treating people well in Abbott's Australia

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 12 September 2013
    40 Comments

    On the asylum seeker issue there is little to be gained in indulging resentment against the Prime Minister and the Coalition except the sour consolations of self-righteousness. The real challenge is to persuade our fellow Australians that each person matters, not because of the choices they make or the qualities they possess, but because they are human, and that a society is measured by the quality of its relationships.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    When punishment fails

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 29 August 2013
    10 Comments

    ABC employee Jill Meagher was murdered by a man who had been granted parole while serving his sentence for a previous violent sexual crime. The largest threat to the security of the community comes from a view that sees punishment entirely in retributive terms. Unless the human development of prisoners is seen as central, imprisonment simply begets further risk. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Community sector sickened by managerial mindset

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 15 August 2013
    10 Comments

    Although community organisations are often a burr in the saddle of a managerially minded government, they are important because they represent a humane vision and because they can reflect back to government an intimate experience of what is happening to the people whom they serve. Their advocacy, even when unwanted, keeps governments in touch with human needs.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Liam Jurrah and the Northern Territory's jail-fail

    • Mike Bowden
    • 29 July 2013
    13 Comments

    AFL footballer Liam Jurrah had his prison sentence for an assault conviction reduced to three months. Hopefully he will not be too harmed by his experience, and afterwards may be given the chance to recommence his football career. But the conditions confronting his cousins and brothers will not change. In the NT there is a troubling confluence between harsher penalties and increasing incarceration rates.

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