This can be seen as the reason as to why indigenous people are overrepresented within the Australian criminal justice system, where by 1999 Aboriginal prisoners constituted 20 percent of the total Australian prison population" (Hogg, 2001: 143). White racial attitudes have been a massive contributor in not only creating a different welfare-penal system, but social system for Aboriginals. The so called White Australia policy has also plagued any Aboriginal opportunity.
Other processes that have decreased Aboriginal opportunity are economic factors such as rural unemployment, which has created poverty and disorder amongst Aboriginal communities (Hogg, 2001). The removal of aboriginal children from their family has shattered the Aboriginal soul and solidarity to state that drove them to a mental disability, resulting in alcoholism, violence, self-mutilation and criminal behaviour. Stolen Aboriginal children in some cases lost their identity growing up suffering and became confused about their role in society.
Additionally other children were neglected by not getting enough or any support and not being provided any type of education; and to make matters worse they had no connection to their Aboriginal families. These factors have seen so many young aboriginals go through welfare and juvenile institutions, which later on when they became adults, promotes them to the next stage, the penal system where they resort to alcohol, violence and suicide (Hogg, 2001).
Being an Aboriginal offender has attracted the government in targeting them continually by using the law to surround them in situations that kept them in touch with the penal institutions and keeping the criminal justice system cycle an ongoing process. The majority of the offence committed, that gets Aboriginal people in prison, have been petty crimes such as public drunkenness and offence against good order (Hogg, 2001). In conclusion Aboriginal people have been vastly rejected from the normalisation, integration and socialisation process from society, particular from the white Australian society.
Policies such as 'White Australia', segregation regimes and destroying aboriginal culture have produced the penal system to punish aboriginal unfairly. Even the little penal welfare that Aboriginal people receive is insignificant compared to those from white communities. The aboriginal race has been and still is currently being repressed of any opportunity and development by the government, through the ill treatment and lack of penal welfare services.
Austlii (2007) 'Death Penalty Abolition Act 1973, Section 4' Commonwealth Consolidated Acts. Available from: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/dpaa1973228/s4.html (Viewed online 15 November)
Austlii (2007) 'Crimes Act 1900, Section 18' New South Wales Consolidated Acts. Available from
http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/nsw/consol_act/ca190082/s18.html (Viewed online 15 November)
Barry J. (1968) The penalty is death: capital punishment in the twentieth century, retentionist and abolitionist arguments with special reference to Australia. Sun Books in association with the Anti-Hanging Council of Victoria. Melbourne.
Black C. (1974) Capital punishment, the inevitability of caprice and mistake. Norton. New York.
Cavadino, M and Dignan, J. (1992). The Penal System. An Introduction 'Justifying Punishment'
Chan, J and Oxley, D (2004)' The deterrent effect of capital punishment: A review of the research evidence'. Crime and Justice Bulletin. Contemporary Issues in Crime and Justice. Number 84 NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics
Garland D (1981) 'The birth of the welfare sanction', British Journal of Law and Society 8(1) 29-45 (Reader)