Evaluation of the Elders Visiting Program

Holmes, Catherine and Stephenson, Peter (2011) Evaluation of the Elders Visiting Program. Project Report. Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education. (Submitted)

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In the Northern Territory, Indigenous people comprise 32% of the total population yet they account for more than 80% of all prisoners. Indigenous recidivism in this jurisdiction has been reported to occur at a rate three times higher than that for non-Indigenous prisoners, with 45% of offenders returning to prison. These figures on Indigenous incarceration and recidivism are representative of the situation for many Indigenous Peoples across the Western World.

As one attempt to address Indigenous incarceration and recidivism rates, the NT and Federal Governments partnered in 2004 on the establishment of the Elders Visiting Program (EVP). With visits commencing in 2005, the EVP had two interconnected objectives of (i) supporting the mental health and wellbeing of Indigenous inmates by maintaining their links to community and culture while in prison; and (ii) improving the reintegration prospects of Indigenous offenders by Elders talking with inmates about behaviours that led to their incarceration and discussing their post-release plans, obligations and expectations upon returning to community.

The set aims of this evaluation were to:-
i. document the critical factors that have underpinned the development of the EVP;
ii. review the performance and outcomes of the EVP against its stated aims and objectives;
iii. document and review the processes and practices of, and relationships between, inmates, the prison service, relevant government agencies, Elders and their respective communities; and
iv. highlight the strengths and limitations of the EVP in order to make recommendations on how the program can be improved and/or expanded.

Item Type: Monograph (Project Report)
Field of Research (2008): 16 Studies in Human Society > 1602 Criminology > 160202 Correctional Theory, Offender Treatment and Rehabilitation
16 Studies in Human Society > 1699 Other Studies in Human Society > 169902 Studies of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Society
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
K Law > K Law (General)
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2013 12:41
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2013 12:41
URI: https://eprints.batchelor.edu.au/id/eprint/304

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