Member for Western Victoria
Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party

Indigenous Justice Outcomes

Mr GRIMLEY (Western Victoria) (12:53): My question is to the minister representing the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and relates to justice outcomes for Indigenous Victorians. In recent weeks there has been much debate about racism and the marginalisation of minorities. While some members of the community and indeed this house sought to raise these important issues at a protest, against the advice of health officials, I seek to raise these important issues in more productive forums. The Prime Minister’s Closing the Gap statement has provided an annual opportunity for the federal government to report on the state of Indigenous welfare in Australia. While the Closing the Gap statement focuses on a number of federal initiatives which would improve outcomes for Indigenous Australians, it also outlines ways that the states and territories can improve outcomes for Indigenous peoples. One major priority outlined in the report was the need to reverse trends which have seen an over-representation of Indigenous Australians in the criminal justice system. The most recent statement aims to reduce the rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in detention by 11 to 19 per cent and adults held in incarceration by at least 5 per cent by 2028. My question is: what steps is the Andrews government taking to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are not over-represented in Victoria’s criminal justice system?

Mr GRIMLEY (Western Victoria) (12:58): Thank you, Minister, for your answer. It also goes to health and education and lots of other areas. I totally agree, and I get that. Family violence also impacts on Aboriginal people at a vastly disproportionate rate to the broader community and has devastating effects on Victorian Aboriginal communities as well. Aboriginal women are 34 times more likely to be hospitalised for family violence and almost 11 times more likely to be killed as a result of violent assaults. My supplementary question is: can the minister provide any insight into what additional measures the Andrews government is considering implementing in order to reduce rates of family violence within Victorian Aboriginal communities?


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