I wanted to share something that made me really, very sad and what I'm doing about it.
I'm a lawyer by training, I studied at RMIT University and I finished my law degree in 2012. I did 24 legal subjects over three years. I've estimated I've spent probably about 1,000 hours in a classroom learning about the law and a lot more than that reading about the law.
After three years we only learnt only one thing about First Peoples' relationship with the law in Australia; it was in a property law class and this is what we learnt, verbatim:
"There's three types of land ownership in Australia, common law title, Torrens title and Native Title".
That's it, that's all we learnt about First Peoples and their law and their relationship with whitefella law. I'm still disappointed because that notwithstanding I had a brilliant education.
You know that last year we launched a campaign for justice reinvestment where we ran workshops and education sessions with people like you about the need to reform our justice system to end high Indigenous jailing rates.
(If you missed them you can download the audio here)
We wanted to raise awareness amongst the community that it's cheaper to send someone to a five star hotel for a night than it is to have them in jail, but it only costs $26 to divert them from jail and reform someone in the community. Yep. That's right $26. Here is the source for that data.
At ANTAR Victoria we always walk our talk and now, we want to walk together with you. When we launched our justice reinvestment campaign you helped us educate your fellow members and supporters about Aboriginal justice issues. Now we're making our campaign so much bigger than last year's!
We're building something really special. We're going to educate locals and visitors alike the only way we know how: by walking together.
We need to raise at least $6,000 to create a self guided walking tour app, in collaboration with Aboriginal people, about First Peoples' legal and civil rights history and milestones. The thing is that if we don't raise the full amount our project will not go ahead. We have 35 days to raise $6,000 or we don't get a red cent!
It would be such a shame if we can't raise the money because we've been busy doing some research and we've found some fascinating things:
Why should we be concerned about what happened to Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner and what should we do about the fact that we're still punishing them 200+ years after they died?
What does the Queen Mother, Ned Kelly's decapitated head, John Monash and a police strike have in common with the campaign to recognise two Aboriginal warriors?
What is involved in the traditional Aboriginal penalty of spearing and what did these spears look like?
This December please help us make this project a reality and we'll tell you all the answers. Not only that, we are offering some amazing rewards for everyone that supports our project.
What do you say? Let's go for a walk?
Thank you for everything you do
ANTaR Vic Communications Officer