Jared Sharp NAAJA Throughcare

Report
Throughcare in the
Territory:
small steps to big change
Jared Sharp
Advocacy Manager
NAAJA
[email protected]
This Presentation:
1. Context – ‘Justice NT Style’
2. Description of NAAJA Throughcare
3. Lessons so far, future directions
Justice … ‘NT style’
How do we compare?
Australian Bureau of Statistics, 4517.0 - Prisoners in Australia (2 April 2013) 28
Unsustainable cost
• It costs at least $250 per day to imprison an adult in the NT.
This equates to:
•
•
•
•
$8000 PER MONTH
$25,000 FOR 3 MONTHS
$50,000 FOR 6 MONTHS
$100,000 PER YEAR
• It costs DOUBLE THAT to keep a young person in detention
• Budget forecasts for 2013-14: 50% increase of young people in
detention
Prison Number Trajectory
Despite a $495 million new prison set to open in 2014, we will:
• likely need to keep Berrimah open
• Need another 1000 bed prison by 2016
• Need yet another by 2020
2013
2020
1600 prisoners
3600 prisoners
2 prisons
4 prisons
$.5 billion construction new prison
$1.5 billion additional construction
$100million running costs
$400million running costs
Disproportionate impact on
Aboriginal People
• 84% of adults in prison are Aboriginal
• 98% of young people in detention are Aboriginal
• ‘The violence of poverty’
no coincidence that Aboriginal people are also more
likely to experience high levels of poverty, inadequate
housing, health and education, unemployment, drug and
alcohol abuse, overrepresentation in child protection,
family abuse, and a loss of connection to community and
culture.
ABC story on
NAAJA Throughcare
‘New program aims to break prison cycle’
A scheme is helping newly-released prisoners in a bid to reduce
the NT's high recidivism rate.
28 Jul 2012, 730NT, ABC TV (1.05 – 3.15)
• http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-07-27/new-program-aimsto-break-prison-cycle/4160682
Throughcare context at NAAJA
• NAAJA provides high quality and culturally
proficient criminal and civil legal assistance for
Aboriginal people in the Top End.
• In addition to the criminal and civil legal practices,
NAAJA also operates an advocacy section which
focusses on policy & law reform, community legal
education and project, and Throughcare.
True Justice, Dignity and Respect
for Aboriginal people
Our Service Area
In Context:
Darwin to Lajamanu: 873km
Katherine to Borroloola:739km
Melbourne to Sydney : 876km
Katherine to Ngukurr: 330km
Canberra to Sydney: 287km
Language
& Culture
Language & Culture
Language
• Rich language in the NT
• Importance of using
interpreters
Who is the Throughcare
team?
• Established in 2009, Funded by the Cth Attorney
General’s Department’s
• Two teams: –
• Prison-based: 2 workers, focus is supporting
prisoners access services and to develop post
release plans, especially re parole
• Palmerston: 4 workers, focus is intensive case
management, working with client 6 months pre
release and continuing at least 6 months post
release
Throughcare
Continuum
First brought
into custody
• Prison Based
Ongoing help
and referrals
• Prison Based
Release Date
Support
• Prison Based &
Intensive
Throughcare
engagement 6
months prerelease
Parole advocacy
• Prison Based
Intensive Case
Management – 6
months postrelease
• Prison Based &
Intensive
• Intensive Case
Management
Ongoing Follow
up contact
• Prison Based &
Intensive
NAAJA Throughcare
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Culturally strengthening
Intensive – 15 clients max
Empowering
Voluntary
Strengths-based
High needs – those who most need our
help
Statistics on parole (January–August 2012)
250
200
150
2010
2011
100
2012
50
0
Total
Clients
Parole Decision
Granted Deferred
Parole
Denied
Parole
Client Warning
Revoked Refused Letter
Services provided by Palmerston Throughcare
1 July 2012 to 31 December 2012
90
80
70
Number of clients
60
50
40
30
20
10
0
Anger
Domestic
managem
Violence
ent
Drug &
alcohol
Mental
Health
Other
Health
support
Accommo
Basic
dation living skills
Coaching Cultural
or
identity
mentoring support
Education
Employme Financial
Transport
nt
advice
Other (ie
legal,
family)
Requiring services
11
24
41
13
9
43
79
83
18
11
25
56
44
Directly provided
6
19
27
11
6
33
79
83
13
8
19
47
34
5
Referred
7
7
23
3
4
13
0
3
8
4
10
17
12
16
Service unavailable
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
0
0
0
0
18
Throughcare’s success
• Only 13% of our clients have returned to
prison whilst they have been part of our
program
• Almost 50% recidivism rate in the NT
(within 2 years of release)
Case study – Alice (not her real
name)
• 17 - Sentenced to 2 years and 6 months – partly suspended - for
violent offending
• Complex family problems – little contact with father; mother seemed
more interested in drinking and her own life than looking after her
children
• No permanent or secure housing: mother travelled frequently while
young. Mother threw client out of home in a regional town, and drifted
to Darwin.
• Carries a lot of hurt and anger.
• Using drugs and alcohol as an escape.
• Disrupted education
• Negative friendship influences
• Sexual assault victim – hasn’t had sexual assault counseling
• Other mental heath issues
6 months pre-release
• Visit client every Tuesday
• Learn more about client: wants to finish school, where live and who with,
discuss aspirations (wants to be nurse)
• Encouraging: schooling, volunteering, behaviour in detention (client
misbehaving 2 months prior to parole date because old ‘partner in crime’
moves to Don Dale)
• Visit local high school. Difficulties in getting them to agree to enrol due to
client’s history – advocate. Work with NT Schools and Family Support Centre
to get client into schooling
• meet with family. Multiple home visits, relationship building
• Organise psychologist – requires ongoing encouragement
• Open bank account, arrange key card
• Start Centrelink application process
• Crisis accommodation through NT Housing
• Application for NT Housing
• Investigate options elsewhere
Point of Release
• Pick up client from front gates upon her release.
• Take client to her family’s house where she will be living
• Difficulties getting client into school continue. Ineligible as
she is required to do pre-schooling entry course.
• Enrol client in NTOEC– organise all forms
• Take client to first meeting with new school (principal,
attendance and truancy officer, school enrolment and
attendance team and assistant principal Year 11)
• Take client to report at Corrections and to get pathology
tests
• Organise living outside family home benefit with Centrelink
and regular Centrelink benefit
• Arrange client’s ID
6 months post-release
• Falling out with family (who evicted from housing) – help client find
alternative housing
• Moves to community out of Darwin to live with boyfriend. Boyfriend’s
mother assaults and threatens client. Arrange for client to leave.
• Organise lawyer to assist with DVO against ex-boyfriend’s mother
• Post DVO – help client secure crisis accommodation
• Arrange for client to stay with NTOEC permanently due to client’s fears she
will not be well-suited to mainstream education
• Information about Training Connections Australia
• Assisted client begin work at Safe House in community– help with
application, letters of reference, ID
• Assist applying for job with the Defence Indigenous Development Program
• Strategize how to avoid negative family influences
• Encourage client to be punctual and reliable
• Encourage client to not see her Aboriginality as barrier - keep her motivated
to stay in school and apply for work
• Discover client was sexually assaulted in past - arrange sexual assault
counseling but requires a lot of encouragement to attend
Small and large successes
• Completed schooling
• Successfully entered Defence Indigenous Development
Program.
• Begun to write. Still hoping to pursue career as a nurse down
the track.
• life skills – tenacity, determination, ability to manage family
issues, avoid negative influences, save money, become
punctual and reliable
• relationship of trust – opened up about sexual assault
• Never failed to report
• Never delivered a ‘dirty’ urine sample.
• Did not breach any parole conditions
• Did not reoffend
Case study – Dwayne(not his real
name)
• 6 year sentence as a 16 year old
• NPP 3 years and 9 months
• When turned 18, moved to adult prison > currently Low
security
• Eligible for parole February 2013, full term April 2015
• Very little development of parole plan
• NAAJA involved – working with this client for 3 years
Post-release planning
• 2013 - Parole plans faltering:
• Repeated deferrals since 2012 for further development of post
release plans, psychological assessment re risk of re-offending, as
well as accommodation issue.
• Parole Officer consider accommodation option unacceptable.
• Also says Elders don’t want him to return to that town. This is in
conflict with instructions from client
• At same time, PPO not proactively looking for alternative options.
• Upshot is that left in custody, and as with many of our
clients, could mean serve full term in custody
Client-centred post-release
planning
• NAAJA Throughcare worker continues to work
tirelessly with client, family, to develop postrelease plans
• Travelled to town (about 750kms from Darwin)
to meet with family and Elders to assess return
to that town and formulate a solid release
proposal.
• Whilst there, met with nearby station and able
to arrange full-time employment.
Dwayne now has viable postrelease option
• Alternative: spend next 1-2 years in custody,
unlikely do programs, leave jail with poor
prospects
• How this post-release plan achieved?
Proactive, responsive to exploring all options
Unwillingness to tolerate status quo
Ability to effectively engage family and Elders
Willingness to do things in the right way – face to
face
Going above and beyond to maximise reintegration
prospects – pursuing job on station
What makes successful
Throughcare?
• Highly skilled and motivated staff
• Client-centred, relationship-based
• Working with individual and family
• Ongoing support, on client’s terms (voluntary)
• Culturally strengthening
• Fiscally-sound: If we keep just 5 people out of
jail for 12 months, we are paying for the annual
cost of the project
• But not just about the money! Ethically and
morally sound

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