Gillian Triggs Calls For Juvenile Detention Inquest After ‘Four Corners’

Tonight, Australia was forced to observe the brutal, indefensible abuse of juvenile detainees within our detention system. 

Four Corners: Australia’s Shame demonstrated just that. Instance after instance of children being subjected to inhumane treatment. Restraint techniques that could have come straight out of Abu Ghraib. Forceful stripping of detainees. And that doesn’t even begin to address the organisational coverups. 

It was incredibly harrowing viewing that ought to set the wheels in motion for a massive overhaul of the Northern Territory’s detention system. Its impact will be felt in the weeks and months to come, but it’s apparent some figures of authority have already taken note. 

On Q&A, which broadcast in the shockwave of Four Corners, Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Craig Laundy said he “still [feels] crook in the guts” after Caro Meldrum-Hanna‘s report.

“The footage horrified me, and tomorrow morning I will be talking to both the Prime Minister and the relevant ministers about what we’ve seen, and what behind those closed doors, what we can do.”
Opposition MP Ed Husic followed up, saying “we display ourselves to the rest of the world as having a higher standard.

Anyone who was watching that tonight would feel that standard wasn’t just compromised, it was completely trashed.

How do we say to the rest of the world that we treat people in incarceration in that way, and then hold our heads up high as a nation?”

President of the Australian Human Rights Commission Gillian Triggs went further than shock, saying “we need to look deeply into our own psyche, as a nation, to say ‘why have we not been prepared to be more humane?’”

“It’s something that as the experts were calling for, we clearly need some kind of investigation into this… we need a proper inquiry, the facts need to be determined, and then we can determine whether people need to be charged.

Certainly I feel we need some kind of government-based independent commission.”
Judging from the footage alone, that’s the least we could do. Watch the full Four Corners episode here. 
Source: Four Corners / Q&A / ABC.
Photo: Four Corners / ABC.