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African Australians over-represented in Victorian prisons

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The AAAC urges the Victorian government to work better with young people from African backgrounds in crime prevention strategies and to appoint multicultural community liaison officers. Such officers have been employed by NSW police in areas such as Blacktown and Fairfield which have successfully assisted integrating people from African backgrounds for many years.

We make this call for action due to the ongoing negative coverage of Australians from an African background in the media and the over representation of African Australian youth who comprise at least 19 per cent of young people in custody despite being less than 0.5 per cent of Victoria’s youth population.

In the AAAC senate paper research into ‘Issues facing diaspora communities in Australia.’ and supported by a number of surveys conducted by organisations in Victoria, African-Australian youth say they’re being targeted and harassed by police in public places because of their race.

The AAAC condemns racial profiling either directly done by the police or indirectly done through main stream Medias sensational reporting of African crime in Melbourne and beyond.

African-Australians contribute so much to this great state of Victoria and Australia as a whole. According to history, people of African descent first arrived on Australia’s shores with the first fleet in 1787. Since then African-Australians have continued to make enormous contributions to Victoria in many sectors such as business, sport, politics, medicine, law, engineering, the arts and entertainment. Others are excelling as community leaders among other portfolios in government, non-government organisations and the private sector.

The AAAC is dedicated to recognizing the many contributions that African-Australians have made to Australia. We recognise that many African-Australians have made many tremendous contributions to Australian society and culture in different ways. We believe that it is very important for the African-Australian community to recognise and celebrate these achievements as we are a part of Australia and have been a fundamental part of its history. The AAAC advocates and supports the importance of African-Australians coming together to form a strong community bond.

We call on the Victorian government to strengthen their inclusivity of their liaison programs to reflect the diverse communities in Victoria they are meant to serve. The AAAC is willing to help in this process in any way we can.

Article: ABC News – Too many young African-Australians are in jail. Some blame police, but the data tells a more complex story

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