Four years of work culminate in signing the Aboriginal Justice Agreement

The NT Government launched the Aboriginal Justice Agreement in Darwin on 9 August 2021 with a commitment of $4.52 million for the first year of operations.

Traditional Owner Aunty Bilawarra Lee welcomed guests to country in the George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens. Master of Ceremonies Charlie King spoke about the work of the Aboriginal Justice unit since 2017 to consult Aboriginal people throughout the Territory.

NTCOSS Chief Executive Officer Deborah Di Natale signed the Agreement as a foundation party along with NAAJA Principal Legal Officer David Woodroffe.

On the day, about 70 groups and individuals also became signatories to the AJA to show their backing for the Agreement’s vision, aims and principles.

The Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Selena Uibo said the seven-year agreement had three key aims covering services, leadership and systems:

  • Reduce reoffending and imprisonment rates of Aboriginal Territorians to reduce crime.
  • Engage and support Aboriginal leadership.
  • Improve justice responses and services for Aboriginal Territorians.

Actions from the Agreement are strongly focused on community-level initiatives including supporting and establishing local law and justice groups, re-introducing community courts, continuing alternatives to custody and redesigning and expanding access to programs that address the root causes of offending.

Guests at the signing of the Aboriginal Justice Agreement. Guests at the signing of the Aboriginal Justice Agreement.
Signing the Aboriginal Justice Agreement Michael Gunner, Deborah Di Natale and NAAJA Chief Executive Officer Priscilla Atkins. Signing the Aboriginal Justice Agreement Chief Minister Michael Gunner, Deborah Di Natale and NAAJA Chief Executive Officer Priscilla Atkins.
Aunty Bilawarra Lee and Charlie King. Aunty Bilawarra Lee and Charlie King.
Minister Chansey Paech, Director of the Aboriginal Justice Unit Leanne Liddle and Minister Selena Uibo speak with the media. Minister Chansey Paech, Director of the Aboriginal Justice Unit Leanne Liddle and Minister Selena Uibo speak with the media.
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Selena Uibo. Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Selena Uibo.
Students from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School with the AJA art work. Tilly (left) and Mia (right) with Minister Selena Uibo. Students from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School with the AJA art work. Tilly (left) and Mia (right) with Minister Selena Uibo.
Deborah Di Natale and Chief Minister Michael Gunner. Deborah Di Natale and Chief Minister Michael Gunner.

Last updated: 31 August 2021

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