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Australian Indigenous HealthBulletin
 
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Aboriginal Services Unit (ASU)

 

Description

The Aboriginal Services Unit (ASU) was established as part of the Department of Correctional Services (South Australia) in 1995 as a result of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal deaths in custody. It was recognised that in order to respond to the Royal Commission recommendations it was necessary to establish the required resources to monitor the outcomes.

The ASU is responsible for advising and developing the provision of culturally appropriate services to Aboriginal prisoners and offenders, and is a significant contributor to policy development for the management and rehabilitation of Aboriginal offenders. The ASU actively participates in the development of partnerships and support for Aboriginal community organisations and other government departments for the provision of services for Aboriginal offenders.

Aboriginal offenders require special attention in any correctional system because of their culture and high level of representation. In the South Australian system, Aboriginal offenders come from urban backgrounds and traditional lands in the far north and western areas of the State. The ASU develops and implements policies and practices applicable for managing these offenders and liaising with key advocacy groups. Culturally competent programs and services are critical to reducing re-offending by Aboriginal offenders and improving outcomes for Aboriginal people.

Departmental strategies relating to Indigenous offenders include:

The ASU also coordinates the 'Prevention of Aboriginal deaths in custody forum' which is held every six weeks at different prisons. This forum focuses on achieving better outcomes in reducing re-offending and ensuring ongoing commitment to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal deaths in custody.

Abstract adapted from the Department for Correctional Services, South Australia

Contacts

Department for Correctional Services, SA
400 King William St
Adelaide SA 5000
GPO Box 1747
Adelaide 5001
Email: dcs@sa.gov.au

Links

 
Last updated: 6 May 2014
 
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