It’s not often you see a prison program which works, but every now and then, someone gets it right. Prison art program The Torch seeks to rehabilitate Aboriginal inmates. The art work is amazing and beautiful, and not only provides a way to make a living, pile up a bit of cash while serving a sentence, prevents recidivism, it helps to reconnect indigenous people with their roots. That last is crucial for indigenous people everywhere. For every indigenous person being forced into a colonial lifestyle, the odds aren’t good. This is highlighted, briefly, in the article:
Mr Morris said Indigenous Australians made up less than 3 per cent of the population, but close to 30 per cent of the prison population.
“They’re 15 times more likely to be incarcerated than non-Indigenous Australians,” he said.
And rates of reoffending are also too high. “Developing economic opportunity and independence allows participants to start afresh, start again and get over that cycle of poverty and disadvantage,” Mr Morris said.