Aboriginal Justice Agreement launched: a good start, but more needed

CLANT congratulates the Northern Territory Government on the launch of the Northern Territory Aboriginal Justice Agreement, which has the potential to be a watershed in the delivery of justice to Territorians.  The Agreement’s three aims (reduce offending and imprisonment of Aboriginal Territorians; engage and support Aboriginal leadership; and improve justice responses and services for Aboriginal Territorians) are highly aspirational, but — provided government is courageous and committed — achievable. CLANT notes that the AJA commits to “consider the recommendations” of the Northern Terrritory Law Reform Committee’s two recent reports into recognition of local Aboriginal laws and mandatory sentencing within twelve months.  That’s a start, but CLANT considers that more is needed: a key to the success of the AJA will be acceptance and implementation by government of the Committee’s strong and sensible recommendations.