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Indigenous Australians

Jailing is failing Indigenous Australians. In 2018, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples accounted for 3% of the total population, but 28% of the adult prison population. In an even grimmer statistic, only 5% of young people (age 10–17) are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, but they represent 59% of young people in detention. It is nearly 30 years since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. Although governments accepted almost all of the Commission’s recommendations, many of them, such as imprisonment being the “last resort,” have not been implemented. Governments have also failed to adequately address the underlying systemic issues which the Royal Commission identified as the cause of the disproportionate rate of Indigenous incarceration.