Fear: Crime and Punishment

Dialogue, Vol. 29, No. 2, pp. 44-54, 2010

UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2011-10

8 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2011

See all articles by Chris Cunneen

Chris Cunneen

Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research,University of Technology Sydney; University of New South Wales, School of Social Sciences; James Cook University - Cairns Campus

Date Written: January 15, 2011

Abstract

Australia, like many western nations, has seen an unprecedented rise in the levels of imprisonment over recent decades. Several factors have flowed from this over-reliance on criminalisation and imprisonment as a tool of social policy:

• governments have seen a significant growth in budgets allocated to criminal justice expenditure at the cost of providing community-based resources;

• criminal justice policy has become increasingly politicised with little difference between the policies of major parties except to the extent that they try to outdo each other in more punitive approaches to law and order; and

• perhaps most importantly, it has been the more marginalised and less powerful social groups which have experienced the brunt of growing prison numbers. In particular, people with mental illness, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and women have seen the most significant increases in their rates of imprisonment. One effect of these policies has been, at a considerable financial cost, to further entrench the social exclusion of the already marginalised.

Keywords: Aboriginal, Criminalisation, Imprisonment, Australia

Suggested Citation

Cunneen, Chris, Fear: Crime and Punishment (January 15, 2011). Dialogue, Vol. 29, No. 2, pp. 44-54, 2010; UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2011-10. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1742633

Chris Cunneen (Contact Author)

Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research,University of Technology Sydney ( email )

15 Broadway, Ultimo
PO Box 123
Sydney, NSW 2007
Australia

University of New South Wales, School of Social Sciences ( email )

Kensington, New South Wales 2052
Australia

James Cook University - Cairns Campus ( email )

PO Box 6811
Cairns, Queensland 4870
Australia

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