• Stop black deaths in custody. (NITV News)Source: NITV News
Following years of demands for action on Aboriginal deaths in custody the WA Government will finally start a custody notification service.
By
Staff writers

21 May 2018 - 12:16 PM  UPDATED 21 May 2018 - 12:18 PM

West Australian police will be required to make a phone call to a specialist 24-hour legal custody notification service, every time an Aboriginal person is taken into custody after WA won funding for the plan from the federal government as part of wider state government efforts to address WA's poor record on Aboriginal deaths in custody.

Calls have been growing for a CNS in recent years following a string of shocking and preventable Aboriginal deaths in custody, in particular.

In August 2014, 22-year-old Ms Dhu complained she was unwell while locked up at South Hedland Police Station for unpaid fines, but some officers assumed she was faking or coming down from drugs. 

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Officers took Ms Dhu to hospital three times in as many days, but she was released back into custody after being cleared by medical staff on the first two occasions.
   
When her condition deteriorated further, she was taken back to hospital and was later declared deceased.

Under the incoming CNS police will be required to call the Aboriginal Legal Service whenever an Aboriginal person is arrested and taken into custody.

With AAP

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