Jobs Events Advertise

Online hate whips up crowd to target home of Aboriginal children in Queensland

Joseph Guenzler -

Around 60 people circled a house in Rockhampton on Sunday sparked by a series of negative online remarks aimed at two Aboriginal children who were believed to reside in the home.

Torin O'Brien, a former One Nation candidate, disclosed the identities and pictures of the children to a white supremacist Facebook group and urged people to gather at the residence on Sunday, claiming that the youths were to blame for recent crimes in the area.

On the Facebook group O'Brien announced his intention to "go and visit … just let them know we've all had enough".

"To put it simply … the more you fuck around, the more you find out," he wrote, followed by a fist emoji.

O'Brien is seen in the video below wearing a black t-shirt with a red and yellow logo.

Child protection group PeakCare expressed grave concern over the incident and recent comments by politicians and media figures blaming the state residential care homes for youth crime.

The organisation notes these assertions are both inaccurate and hazardous, and have the potential to endanger both vulnerable children and support staff.

PeakCare Queensland chief executive Tom Allsop said on Monday that "only a small minority of children in residential care have had contact with the youth justice system".

"We have children in these homes with significant disabilities. Children who are in residential care because it means sibling groups can stay together. Children who are there because the system is under significant strain and there is nowhere else safe for them to go," he said.

"We have seen inflammatory public comments made over the weekend that label all children in residential care as criminals. This is not only blatantly untrue but profoundly distressing for the majority of children in residential care who have never had involvement with the youth justice system.

"If we are going to solve the issues of youth justice, we need to stop politicising and persecuting children-in-care and focus on the facts."

Capricornia District Superintendent Glen Pointing advises against vigilante justice. (Image: ABC)

Capricornia District Superintendent Glen Pointing has warned against vigilante "justice" in a press conference this morning.

"We empathise strongly with the victims of crime and understand, but it's a job for the police and we don't want to see anyone else get hurt," he said.

"Taking the law into your own hands is for all but danger as there are a number of unintended consequences that can happen as a result.

"Similar things have occurred in Townsville. People were following a stolen car, they clipped the back the stolen car and as a result a young lady died," he said, referring to an incident in 2021 in which Christopher Michael Hughes was allegedly in pursuit of a stolen car when his car veered onto the wrong side of the road and collided with a motorcycle, killing 22-year-old Jennifer Board.

PeakCare acknowledged Queensland's child safety workers and residential care staff do "an incredible job under immense pressure" and said they are instrumental in giving hope back to children who have experienced significant abuse and neglect.

"Addressing youth crime will not happen overnight and there is already positive progress being made through increased early intervention," Mr Allsop said.

"You can have the toughest laws for responding to the consequences of youth crime, but you are not going to fix the problem until you have smarter approaches for preventing the causes of youth offending in the first place."

   Related   

Debbie Kilroy slams Queensland's expansion of youth detention, and calls for community solutions
Queensland Premier Steven Miles and Youth Justice Minister Di Farmer initiated the construction of a new 80-bed youth detention...
Joseph Guenzler 1 Mar 2024
Canada's largest private sector union condemns arrest of First Nations journalist, warns of threat to democracy
Canada's largest private sector union has slammed the arrest and charging of an Indigenous journalist as a threat to "Canadian n...
Giovanni Torre 1 Mar 2024
Mystery around locations of native forestry plan
The location of native forest parcels slated to be logged in Tasmania under a Liberal government election pledge may not be made...
Ethan James 1 Mar 2024
DOBBY, Emma Donovan amongst new Indigenous Literacy Foundation ambassadors
National charity the Indigenous Literacy Foundation has announced musician DOBBY, singer Emma Donovan, TV personality Bianca Hun...
Callan Morse 1 Mar 2024

   Joseph Guenzler   

Debbie Kilroy slams Queensland's expansion of youth detention, and calls for community solutions
Queensland Premier Steven Miles and Youth Justice Minister Di Farmer initiated the construction of a new 80-bed youth detention...
Joseph Guenzler 1 Mar 2024
Clean energy toolkit launched to drive sustainable development
In a year-long effort, the recently unveiled Community Energy Planning Toolkit presents a seven-step guide for First Nations com...
Joseph Guenzler 29 Feb 2024
Sydney Comedy Festival returns this April with an all-star cast of Indigenous comedians
The Sydney Comedy Festival has unveiled additional acts for the 2024 edition, scheduled from April 22 to May 19. The festivitie...
Joseph Guenzler 29 Feb 2024
Australia Has a Black History: a Gomeroi woman's photographic journey
The work of Gomeroi photographer Barbara McGrady is currently on display at Chau Chak Wing Museum in an extraordinary new exhibi...
Joseph Guenzler 28 Feb 2024