Now that Judge Borchers has placed the lad in a …

Comment on Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS by John Bell.

Now that Judge Borchers has placed the lad in a controlled environment for proper assessment and the dust begins to settle, some questions need to be asked:
1. Who is to conduct the assesment process?
2. What will the assessment process actually encompass ie what will be the terms of reference ?
3. Will the results be made public and in what public forum?
4. Will the Attorney-General make publicly transparent the processing of the CAALAS complaint against Judge Borchers?
5. Will the Chief Justice remove Judge Borchers from cases dealing with youngsters on the rampage?
6. Will CAALAS employ someone full-time in future to care for for troubled and lawbreaking teens?
7. Will CAALAS be asked to explain why no plan was put to the court to make sure this lad did not re-offend?
Doubtless there are others.
It is only complete transparency in the process of obtaining the answers to such questions in this case that will ensure the public trust can be maintained in the integrity of our youth justice system.

John Bell Also Commented

Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
While Ms van Iersel and CAALAS are lodging a complaint with the Chief Justice about Judge Borchers in a flawed youth justice system, perhaps concerned citizens should consider lodging a complaint with the NT Bar Association about Mr Bhutani, the young lad’s lawyer.
When questioned by Judge Borchers on a plan for the lad’s rehab and welfare if released back into the community, Mr Bhutani had nothing. Zilch. No plan. No nothing, so to speak.
A lawyer just doing the minimum to win the case. On the public purse. After the win in the court hearing they part ways – the young lad goes back on the street and the lawyer goes back to his office. To get his next brief.
Hardly inspires confidence in our legal eagles of the common people, hey.
If CAALAS wants a judge hauled over the coals in this case it seems to me there is evidence to haul the CAALAS lawyer over the coals, too.


Recent Comments by John Bell

Large number of cars vandalised at Araluen
@Josh Davis. Josh. You are being a tad unfair, quite harsh, in fact, on 99.9% of people who have been expressing serious concerns about escalating property and increasingly violent youth behaviour.

No fairminded person has been “heaping endless vitriol” on these kids. They are simply distressed and fearful of what may well happen in the very near future if this massively destructive behaviour does not stop, no matter what the root cause is.

There has to be a balance between opportunities to rehabilitate/reconnect and getting these kids to take responsibility for their own actions.

They have to be taught, if they do not know already, that the consequences of their anarchic behaviour cause serious hurt and deep stress to victims and their families. Invariably.

In many cases the nameless victims they target suffer far more than the kids who are doing the damage.

Taking personal responsibility and growing up to be good citizens knows no cultural boundaries. All cultures must apply the same standards to be met by their youth.

If these kids can simply be taken back to talk to the victims they have hurt, every time, I believe the light will eventually switch on for all except the smallest minority in every culture who may never wish to change or give a toss.

It would also be comfort for the victims and conducive to better understanding and better relations between the feared and the fearful.


Large number of cars vandalised at Araluen
Is the Alice a very sad place now, or am I just imagining it?
So many locals and former locals of the Baby Boomer generation have been saying to me that these are the most depressing and awful of times compared with the Alice of the 1960s, 70s and 80s.
It seems to me that racial issues now take second place to the sheer lawlessness of Alice youth out of control.
The relevant authorities, both black and white, appear unable to stem the overwhelming tide of youthful social anarchy, let alone define and isolate the real reasons, far less coming up with any answers.
Where to now, Alicians?


A life in flowers: new account of the extraordinary Olive Pink
In a letter of thanks to Dan Conway and the staff of NTA District Office in Hartley Street in 1969 for remembering her birthday on St Patricks Day with a bunch of flowers, Miss Pink fondly recalled her favourite flower from when she was a little girl in Tasmania.
Primrose forget-me-nots.
Miss Pink used the term “Alician” to describe herself.
Thank you, Ms Ward, for this lovely tribute to a great Alician, a true Lady of the Red Heart who loved all flowers.


Bangtail Muster draws big crowd on glorious day
The May Day Sports afternoon after the Muster was a traditional feature that is fondly remembered.
Under the guidance of Mrs Joan Higgins at the Youth Centre at Anzac Hill, the sports day was a genuine all-of-community get together that resonated with every section of the Alice community.
Who can ever forget the magic twinkle toes of Betty Campbell as she regularly blitzed her rivals in the women’s section of the Alice Gift? Betty was still beating her own teenage daughters well past the age when most mums had their feet up enjoying middle age.
The tug of war and throwing the rolling pin were genuine crowd pleasers that drew crowds of 3000 to 4000 at Traeger at its peak in the 70s.
The commercialisation of May Day with the introduction of thoroughbred racing and the Alice Cup at Pioneer Park, together with ridiculous public liability imposts, signalled the beginning of the end.
In 2002 at Anzac Hill the Sports Day finally drew to a close. Mrs Higgins at the entrance gate with tears in her eyes. It was the only time I ever saw Mrs Higgins cry.
Wonderful memories of a very happy day of togetherness for all Alicians.
So sad that moneyed interests choked the life out of such a spontaneous expression of the Alice community soul.


1968, when revolution was everybody’s business
@ Russell Guy. The single biggest factor that influenced the issues in those times in Central Australian remote Aborinibal communities that I saw was the sheer deluge of Commonwealth funding that saturated the landscape from 1973 onwards for political and idealistic reasons.
You had to see it to believe it.
The floodgates opened and they have never been checked.
The mix of government money and altruism is far too daunting for a vote-conscious pollie to challenge. For so many obvious reasons. Sad.


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