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NCJ Number: 228022 Find in a Library
Title: What Australians Think About Crime and Justice: Results from the 2007 Survey of Social Attitudes
Author(s): Lynne Roberts; David Indermaur
Date Published: 2009
Page Count: 43
Sponsoring Agency: Australian Institute of Criminology
Canberra ACT, 2601, Australia
Publication Number: ISBN 978 1 921532 29 0
Sale Source: Australian Institute of Criminology
GPO Box 2944
Canberra ACT, 2601,
Type: Survey
Format: Book (Softbound)
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This report provides an analysis of the responses in the 2007 Australian Survey of Social Attitudes (AuSSA) on crime and justice.
Abstract: Highlights of key findings from the 2007 Australian Survey of Social Attitudes (AuSSA) on perceptions of crime included: (1) approximately 12.9 percent of adult Australians view crime, drugs, or terrorism as the most important issue facing Australia today; (2) a large majority of the public have inaccurate views about the occurrence of crime and the severity of sentencing; and (3) the majority of respondents support the government having the right to tap telephone conversations (76.7 percent), to random stop and search (54.2 percent), to detain indefinitely without trial (56.1 percent) where terrorism is suspected, but do not support torture of prisoners (59.6 percent). Highlights of key findings on fear of crime are (1) a majority of Australians rate incivilities as ‘not a very big problem' or ‘not a problem at all’; (2) on average, females reported higher rates of fear than males; and (3) fear of crime is associated with decreased confidence in the criminal justice system and more punitive attitudes. Highlights of key findings on the administration of criminal justice include: (1) approximately two-thirds of Australians (67.6 percent) support increased government expenditure on police and law enforcement and (2) approximately one-third of Australians report that the government is successful in controlling crime, one-third reports it is unsuccessful in controlling crime, and one-third reports it is neither successful nor unsuccessful. Survey results on changing attitudes over time include a consistent decline in public support or approval of the death penalty since 1996 and the proportion of Australians who agree that stiffer sentences are needed gradually declining from 84.8 in 1987 to 71.7 percent in 2007. This report provides data from the 2007 AuSSA on key questions relating to Australia’s social attitudes and behaviors over time on crime and the criminal justice system. Figures, tables, references, and appendixes
Main Term(s): Public Attitudes/Opinion
Index Term(s): Attitudes; Australia; Criminal justice system analysis; Effectiveness; Foreign criminal justice systems; Perception; Public Opinion of Crime; Public Opinion of the Courts; Public Opinion of the Police
Note: AIC Reports: Research and Public Policy Series 101
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