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Aboriginal youth and restorative justice: Critical notes from the Australian frontier

Blagg, Harry
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) In Restorative justice for juveniles: Conferencing, mediation and circles, ed. Allison Morris and Gabrielle Maxwell, 227-242. With a foreword by DJ Carruthers. Oxford: Hart Publishing.

Rates of incarceration for aboriginal people in Australia are disproportionately high. Does restorative justice offer hope in addressing this reality? Blagg believes that the relevance of restorative justice in its current forms to the situation of aboriginal people is marginal. Restorative justice, he states, must cast a “restorative visionâ€? that truly addresses their social, economic, and political context. To support his perspective, Blagg analyzes several issues: the over-representation of aboriginal youth in the criminal justice system; the effects of “law and orderâ€? politics on aboriginal people; aboriginal questions about the legitimacy of conferencing and community crime prevention initiatives; stereotypes of aboriginal juvenile offenders; ambiguities concerning family conferencing and Western Australia’s Juvenile Justice Teams as they relate to aboriginal youth; and the need for restorative justice to support indigenous culture and customary law.


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