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VICE Australia

Darwin Night Patrol

In Part 2 of our series, Over Represented, we rode along with the city's Indigenous night patrol to see how they assist the homeless, and intervene before the police arrive.
September 14, 2015, 12:54am

With the arrival of Europeans, Indigenous people were stripped of their culture in a way that continues to cause mental health issues, suicide, and alcohol abuse.

In the Northern Territory, First Australians make up 86 percent of the prison population. Many are just incarcerated over unpaid fines, missed court dates, or traffic violations. In Darwin, this group are often Long Grassers; a transient population of mainly Indigenous people who travel in from remote communities and get stuck in a cycle of homelessness, alcoholism, and incarceration.

Darwin's traditional owners, Larrakia Nation, are trying to combat these issues with a range of social services including Night Patrols. We rode along to see how they help people home, assist the homeless, and ultimately keep Aboriginal people out of the justice system.

This documentary is part two of Over Represented, our series on Indigenous incarceration. For the other parts, watch Briggs - Live at Juvie and Barred Calls. You can also check out The Incarceration Issue, a special edition from VICE.