by Pamela Nathan, CASSE Aboriginal Program Director
Re: Michael Lallo’s article in The Age on 10 July 2013 “Indigenous Prison Voices Inside Out”.
Michel Lallo reports that the indigenous women at the Dame Phyllis Frost Centre have been granted five live broadcasts called Beyond The Bars, which will air every day this week on 3RRR and 3KND. A 20-year old Aboriginal woman tells her story. She says, “In media and society, there are stereotypes about why Aboriginal people are over-represented in the prison system. This makes it personal. When you hear someone’s story you understand.”
Telling your story generates understanding and possibly, as this young woman says, it is a “healing process too”. As another woman pointed out “she’s finally got a voice” – albeit sadly from prison.
Nonetheless, if prisoners can be given the opportunity to tell their stories and not have them hidden away in files, finding their voice may well be healing and empowering and provide a step in the rehabilitation process.
Let’s hear the voices of the indigenous prisoners and their stories!
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