ROYAL COMMISSION INTO ABORIGINAL DEATHS IN CUSTODY
Senator SIEWERT (Western Australia) (1.14 pm)—I seek leave to amend general business notice of motion No. 221 standing in my name relating to the 20th anniversary of the report of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody in 1991.
That the Senate:
(a) notes that 15 April 2011 will denote 20 years since the release of the report of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody in 1991;
(b) draws attention to increasing and alarmingly high rates of incarceration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, who are 14 times more likely to be incarcerated and represent 26 per cent of our prison population, despite representing less than 3 per cent of our total population and that between 2000 and 2010 their rate of imprisonment increased from 1 248 to 1 892 prisoners per 100 000 adults, as compared to a change from 130 to 134 non-Indigenous prisoners per 100 000 adults;
(c) raises concern at continuing disproportionately high rates of deaths in custody of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with 269 deaths in custody since the report in 1991, that is, nearly one in 5 of all deaths in custody;
(d) expresses concern that 20 years later the majority of the recommendations of the Royal Commission have not been fully implemented; and
(e) calls on the Government to: (i) consider the outcomes of current reviews underway into the implementation of the recommendations of the Royal Commission, undertake to report on progress and gaps, and map out further action, and (ii) work with the states and territories to undertake an audit of standards and independent monitoring of places of detention and consider options to promote consistency across jurisdictions.
Question agreed to.