I’m just back from Canberra, and I wanted to update you. It was a huge day of meetings – and yesterday’s headline in The Australian tells of some progress we made: “Peris backs jail audit over disability prisoners”
We’ve now got support from all sides of politics. The Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion, the PM’s advisor Warren Mundine, Senator Nova Peris, Senator Siewert and Boyce and others we met have all shown support for the release of Roseanne. And we’re closer than ever to a national audit and policy to end this shameful practice.
I’m hopeful the Federal Government can show some leadership on this. It’s one thing to say they agree – now it’s time for them to respond with real action to end the use of indefinite prison sentences as ‘care’ for intellectually disabled people found ‘unfit to plead’.
The response by Senator Scullion was very encouraging; he had a deep knowledge of issues and the effects of foetal alcohol harm. He should be thanked for his concern and encouraged as Minister of Aboriginal Affairs to push for the reforms needed to end this unjust imprisonment. Please help me thank the Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion for meeting us – and urge him to immediately begin an inquiry and develop a policy.
Here’s where you can send him a quick email saying just that: Nigel.Scullion@ia.pm.gov.au
Roseanne’s release is progressing, with the NT and WA beginning to work on a care plan and her transfer to Alice Springs. She phones me nearly everyday asking when she will be released. I look forward to having a date before too long.
After decades of inaction, we’re finally bringing this issue out into the light. Thank you for signing my petition – and I’ll be in touch with more updates soon.
P.S. Some of you may have heard of Marlon Noble’s case. He spent 10 years in prison without conviction after being found “unfit to plead” just like Roseanne. If you want to watch his incredible story, recorded by the