Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Treating People Differently Can Often Achieve Equality

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Treating People Differently Can Often Achieve Equality

Article excerpt

A RECENT SMS in The Chronicle questioned the need for Murri courts, asserting that courts should be the same for all Australians and claiming that a separate court for Aboriginals (sic) just serves to further separate us and create more racial tension.

Let's start at the beginning.

In 2002, as a direct response to the substantial over-representation of indigenous people in the justice system, a group of concerned legal practitioners and indigenous elders developed the concept of Murri Court, a community-based co-operative and practical process which blends the existing formal justice system with Murri traditional law.

Murri court is not a politically correct or bleeding heart experiment on the aone law for them and another law for usa system.

The elders demand that offenders respect the law and face the consequences of their actions while supported into reconnection with their community.

The evidence is clear that four out of five offenders who have appeared before the Murri court have not reoffended.

While equality is often described as treating everyone the same, sometimes treating people differently is the best way to treat everyone equally.

For example, for students to have an equal chance to pass an exam, the test paper needs to be in a language that is understood.

Diversity is about recognising, valuing and taking account of people's different backgrounds, skills and experiences.

Diversity is important because it allows everyone's skill and contribution to be used and valued.

The experiences of different people make a real difference to the effectiveness of the impact on individuals and the community as a whole.

One of the great myths in Australia is that equality and diversity is about one group of people getting aspeciala treatment at the expense of someone else.

However it's about everyone getting a fair chance to achieve their full potential.

It means treating everyone equally on their merits and not treating some unfairly because of their difference. …

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