Policing

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A harsh criminal justice system – in particular, more prisons and people behind bars – has apparently become a hallmark of good government. AAP/Dave Hunt

How ‘tough on crime’ politics flouts death-in-custody recommendations

Australia has become less compassionate, more punitive and more ready to blame individuals for their alleged failings since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody.
In the Netflix series Making a Murderer, Brendan Dassey is subject to interrogation tactics known as the ‘Reid technique’. Netflix

Making a Murderer: why innocent people confess under interrogation

Innocent people do confess under interrogation to crimes they did not commit, even providing details about the crime. What leads them to falsely confess to very serious crimes?
Australia has more police relative to population than ever before and they are a costly form of crime prevention. AAP/Mitchell Burke

Do we need more police, or are there better ways to cut crime?

Police are important, but not sufficient, in the crime-reduction effort. I have enormous faith in their abilities, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we need more of them.
Sydney’s Kings Cross precinct has 3AM ‘last-drinks’ laws and 1:30AM lockouts for premises that serve alcohol. AAP/April Fonti

Last-drink’ laws, not lockouts, reduce alcohol-fuelled violence

As Queensland considers new laws to curb alcohol-fuelled violence in response to a one-punch death, several policy experiments that have occurred in recent years can provide valuable lessons.
Police often don’t recognise that someone has an intellectual disability or brain injury due to a lack of training in this area, researchers have heard. Brian Yap (葉)/flickr

Aboriginal people with disabilities get caught in a spiral of over-policing

Police have become the default frontline response to Aboriginal people with mental and cognitive disabilities, setting this group up for a lifetime of 'management' by the criminal justice system.
Aboriginal people with mental and cognitive disability are ‘managed’ by police, courts and prisons due to a lack of appropriate community-based services. Kate Ausburn/flickr

Why Aboriginal people with disabilities crowd Australia’s prisons

Australia's high rates of imprisonment and re-imprisonment of Aboriginal people with mental and cognitive disabilities is not only shameful, it is entirely predictable and preventable.

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