From an episode of The MissionPresented by Daniel James


The Mission: Sarah Schwartz On Why It's Time For A Police Ombudsman

Sarah Schwartz is the Principal Managing Lawyer and Senior Advocate of the Wirraway Practice (Police & Prison Accountability) at the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service. Along with the Police Accountability Project, other community legal centres and Aboriginal organisations, VALS have called on Premier Daniel Andrews to overhaul the state’s failed police oversight system with the introduction of a Police Ombudsman.

Sarah calls in to The Mission to discuss with Daniel the current failed system of handling police complaints. With Aboriginal people more likely to experience serious police misconduct, and reports that more than half of complaints made by Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander people fail to collect or consider relevant experience, she explains why it's time for a truly independent police ombudsman, one that will hold police accountable.

'Lives are at risk. There is mounting evidence that policing is the entry point to the criminal justice system. If there's no oversight of police, we find ourselves risking more deaths in custody.'

Sarah Schwartz
Listen to The Mission: Sarah Schwartz On Why It's Time For A Police Ombudsman15:0211 October 2022