Why is Representation Important in Indigenous Australian Communities?
Representation has played an essential role in the structure of Eurocentric mythologies in Australia. Howitt (Cited in Jupp, J. (2001).) explains that the indigenous people have been highly isolated by the non-indigenous since they perceive Australia as a boundary society. It is very important for the indigenous community to be equally represented so as to enjoy the same recourses as the rest of the Australians. This book demonstrates the rate at which the indigenous Australians come into contact with the criminal justice system be it as victims or perpetrators, as much higher compared to non-indigenous Australians. Jupp, J. (2001). Victimization among them is higher by four to six times especially in family violence cases. Regardless of the fact that their overall population is less than three percent of the entire Australian population, indigenous Australians’ rate of imprisonment is almost twelve times of the rest of the people with most of them arrested on assault charges. However, there are factors that contribute to them being involved in violence victim or otherwise. Alcohol misuse, exposure to abuse and violence at an early age, prior involvement with crime and socio-economic disadvantages are among these factors. The author further demonstrates that most of these cases go unreported to the police more so when the victim is indigenous. Jupp, J. (2001). The reason they choose to disclose cases of violence, are the same as those for the wider community only that theirs are made complex by the compound layers of disadvantage, concerns on violent vengeance and historical fear as well as lack of trust from some government agencies and police. When these people are represented, the victims will be able to access the necessary help and support as well as enabling the police to deal with the perpetrators. The number of unreported cases will dwindle from the current ninety percent. Having representatives in all facets in the government will help ensure that people are safe from violence. Residential services and efficient alcohol treatment will be easily accessible. Representation of places has played an important role in structuring Eurocentric mythologies in Australia. It is therefore of great importance in the indigenous Australian community if this representation is perpetuated.