Impact of Criminal Infringement Notices on Aboriginal communities Review - August 2009

ISBN 978 1 921132 42 1
Category Reports and submissions
Publication Date 1 August 2009

Summary

The Review of the impact of Criminal Infringement Notices on Aboriginal communities examines the police use of Criminal Infringement Notices or 'CINs' to fine adults suspected of offensive conduct, offensive language, shoplifting and a limited range of other minor offences.

Following a trial in 12 locations, the CINs scheme was extended state-wide on 1 November 2007. Parliament required the Ombudsman to review the expanded scheme, including how the provisions impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

The Ombudsman found that the number of CINs issued to Aboriginal people increased sharply after the scheme was extended state-wide, and that 45 percent of CINs issued to Aboriginal people were for offensive language. The review also found that Aboriginal CIN recipients were much more likely to experience difficulties in paying the fine within the time allowed and be referred for enforcement action by the State Debt Recovery Office.

The report highlights the need for further reforms to the fines enforcement system, including a key recommendation to establish a body with ongoing responsibility for monitoring the fair and effective use of fines and penalty notices in NSW and providing advice on opportunities for further improvement.


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