Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women in Australian Prisons

Hilde Tubex, Dorinda Cox

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review


The increasing imprisonment rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women is a serious matter of concern with an impact that extends far beyond the women to their families and communities. A dearth of publicly available national data addressing the intersection between gender and Indigenous status contributes to fragmented understandings of Aboriginal women’s imprisonment. The gap in available comprehensive data renders invisible the web of structural constraints and violence in which Aboriginal women find themselves. This is of a particular concern when interrogating the types of offences for which Aboriginal women are apprehended. Sentencing of Aboriginal women for ‘acts intended to cause injury’ has been on the rise. Yet little research has contextualised such acts within the broader framework of the ongoing effect of settler-colonisation and its links to family violence and inter-generational trauma. This chapter explores the need to shift the focus from women as ‘offenders’ to an understanding of the broader context in which this behaviour takes place. In doing so, this shift will facilitate the development of grass-roots support networks addressing an alarming trend.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNeo-Colonial Injustice and the Mass Imprisonment of Indigenous Women
EditorsLily George, Adele N. Norris, Antje Deckert, Juan Tauri
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-44567-6
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-44566-9
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sep 2020

Publication series

NamePalgrave Studies in Race, Ethnicity, Indigeneity and Criminal Justice


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