Reform in Politics, Criminal Justice and the Police in Post-Fitzgerald Queensland: An Assessment
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This article reviews the main recommendations and reforms emanating from the 1989 Fitzgerald Inquiry in Queensland. The ups and downs of the reform process are chronicled under the three headings of 'politics', 'criminal justice' and 'police'. In politics, there has been a retreat from Fitzgerald's vision for integrity in government, evidenced by bias in the electoral system, the failure to establish transparency in government decision-making, violations of appointment by merit, and the politicisation of policing. In criminal justice, major hypocrisies and inefficiencies remain in the operation of the law, with a regressive approach to crime reduction through over-reliance on imprisonment. In policing, the Fitzgerald vision for community policing was never implemented at the local level, and the pre-Fitzgerald model of police investigating police remains dominant. The article is focused on describing the nature and extent of the subversion of reform, with some reference to two contributing factors. The first is the gap between the general principles articulated in the Fitzgerald Report and the specific wording of its recommendations. The second concerns the power culture of the Australian Labor Party, whose winner-takes-all philosophy has triumphed over participatory democracy.
Griffith Law Review
© 2009 Griffith Law School. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Criminology not elsewhere classified
Police Administration, Procedures and Practice