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Choose one of the following questions:
- What are the main barriers to achieving justice in the Australian criminal justice system? Choose one institution of the criminal justice system (police, courts or corrections) and explain how access to justice may not always be impartial or fair. Use case studies and examples to support your case.
- 'Social inequality is embedded in institutions of criminal justice’. Choose one disadvantaged group (such as Indigenous people, women or young people for example) to discuss this statement. Use case studies and examples to support your response.
Modern civilization and the tenets incidental to it arose in the minds of men to create an ideal society in which man experiences freedom across a plethora of facets. The main aim of the construction of the society in which we live today was to inculcate principles of equity and equality for the subjects of such a society to foster mutual development. These tenets are the core of modern society and are applicable in theory through laws and regulations. While the laws paint a very rosy picture about the achievement of equality in society and how it strives to protect the rights of every individual, the actual picture is in stark contrast to the above sentiment. The purpose of this report is to highlight the aforementioned disparity between the ideal sentiment and the actuality of the matter by delving into instances of social injustice carried out against the indigenous populace of Australia within the paradigm of the criminal justice system and subsequently highlight these disparities in order to prevent them in the years to come.
The term 'indigenous people' in Australia refers to primarily two races, i.e. the Aborigines and the Torres Strait Islanders (there exists a third category which comprises of people who share combined parentage of the above two races) (Pink, 2008, p. 196). As per the 2016 census carried out in Australia, the Aborigines and the Torres Strait Islanders represent a cumulative of 2.8 per cent of the Australian population and stand at a total of 649,200 people (ABS, 2017). While the number may appear minuscule when compared to the entirety of the Australian populace, the fact is that these people are no different from regular Australian citizens in the eyes of the law and thus, have the same rights and liberties as granted to them under the Australian judicial system. However, there have been several criminal instances in the past which opine an image contrary to the above statement, and the same has been highlighted hereon.