attached are the posters, leaflets and petition for the 9th anniversary of the death of 17 year old tj hickey arising from a redfern police chase on 14 february, 2004.
below you will find the link to the facebook address for this campaign and much thanks must go to shelly for her very good works in getting these information sheets together. a great act of solidarity for the call for justice.
below that is a personal call by tj’s mother, gail hickey, adding her voice to the many other voices calling for the re-opening of the investigation and a new coronial inquest whereby all the evidence can be presented to find the truth of how and why tj died. gail also fully endorses the call by mavis pat and her family when 16 year old john pat was terribly assaulted and kicked by 5 drunken off-duty wa police at roebourne, wa on 28 september 1983. all 5 police were exonerated. gail’s message is strong in solidarity with not only the pat family but also with all other death in custody families, well over 400+ and still counting and no police, gaol or justice health officer has ever been found guilty of contributing to any of those deaths. isja and other supporting groups are working towards a national day of action during september. more on this later.
gail, her family and community, along with a great number of supporters also want a major rally and march this year from the fence-line where tj was rammed and catapulted to his death by a redfern police car and a march to the nsw parliament house to allow gail to present up to 10 000 petitions calling for justice for the hickey family to the nsw attorney-general, greg smith. the more petitions we can have gail present, hopefully the more justice will finally be applied. we ask all of you who can to print off the posters and leaflets and display at your work, your club, your school, your church, in fact everywhere you possibly can. print off the petitions and fill as many sheets as possible and return to me at the address below no later than monday 11 february 2013. together we can force change but we need to all pull together to do it.
please join us in obtaining justice for gail and her 6 daughters and grandchildren. your son or daughter could be the next victim.
the following unexpurgated article written by myself and my loyal comrade in struggle, raul bassi, explains why the 9 year call for justice is required and i need not add any more to it.
indigenous social justice association
(m) 0450 651 063
(p) 02 9318 0947
address 1303/200 pitt street waterloo 2017
we live and work on the stolen lands of the gadigal people.
sovereignty treaty social justice
Here is the updated TJ flyer + poster. I have attached also the petition. Have added the facebook address and also the front and back of the flyer is now on the same sheet to make it easier for printing. I have uploaded these to the TJ Hickey facebook group listed below.
facebook.com/Stop Black deaths in Custody Rally for 9th Anniversary of TJ Hickey 2013.
Love in struggle comrade Shelly
A message from Gail Hickey
I totally agree with Mavis Pat when she says her son has never left her and that she remembers him every day. Both Mavis 16 year-old son, John, and my 17 year-old son, TJ, sadly share something in common both were only children when they
were brutally killed by police.
It is now more than a quarter of a century since the formation of the RCIADIC but nothing has changed deaths in custody still continue at an alarming rate. TJs case is now at the United Nations as the system failed our family dismally as it has the Pat family and the hundreds of other families whove lost loved ones in similar circumstances. I urge you all to show support for not only the Pat family, but for my family and all deaths-in-custody families, who like us, want to see long overdue real change be part of the John Pat NDA on 28 September, 2013.
Gail Hickey, 4 January 2013
TJ HICKEY: WHAT DO NINE YEARS MEAN.
FOR NINE LONG YEARS Gail Hickey and her Family have indefatigably campaigned for Justice in the death of their son, TJ Hickey, an Aboriginal man just 17 years old. He died as a consequence of the Redfern police pursuit that ended with his death the following day.
FOR NINE LONG YEARS Gail, the Family and their supporters have been telling and re-telling the history. His bike was rammed by a police car; he was thrown in the air with great force, and landed on the spiked fence line, again with great force.
Instead of ensuring proper medical attention was given by the first police officer on the scene, then-Constable Michael Hollingsworth, TJ was roughly pulled off the spikes and thrown to the concrete, then searched, whereby he bled very heavily despite the alleged assistance by Hollingsworth. Basic First Aid rules, as all police are trained for, insist that impaled victims must be left in situ or to remain impaled until the Police Rescue Unit is called to assist. When the Police Rescue Unit did arrive with medically trained and competent staff, Hollingsworth sent them away. Finally two ambulances arrived and took over but instead of taking him to the Royal PrinceAlfredHospital, the closest, he was transported to the Prince of Wales hospital at Randwick. He died early next morning.
FOR NINE LONG YEARS we have witnessed the history of every police Death in Custody repeated in this case: The innocents were convicted and jailed and the guilty got away and promoted in their ranks. How so? That Sunday night the many youth who knew TJ and/or others who blamed the Redfern police for the death of TJ became involved in the so-called Redfern riots. These young people were angered by the police driving through and around The Block telling Aboriginal kids that they would be next and also disrespecting the Hickey Family in their grief by pointing to them and laughing. Family complaints were ignored by the senior police of the time and their rightful anger was later vented.
But the aftermath of these events were really bizarre: the police officers involved were promoted, the fighters for justice were arrested, some convicted and even did some time in gaol. The Carr Government concerned with other reactions offers a Taj Mahal in Redfern building the Redfern Community Centre in the Block as a tokenistic act to calm the Aboriginal people.
NINE YEARS AGO ISJA (Indigenous Social Justice Association) became involved and offered Gail Hickey the services of a Solicitor and a Barrister whom were expected to have a vigorous fight for Justice for the Hickey Family. The police and the Carr Government however had other ideas and talked Gail into accepting a Government-and-police-sponsored legal team that did very little in representing the Family in their fight for Justice.
NINE (OR EIGHT+) YEARS AGO THE NSW Coroner, John Abernethy, firmly restricted the scope of the Coronial Inquest. The allowable evidence was restricted also. Normal legal and Coronial procedures and practices were not followed, like presenting the Final Autopsy Report. This Report would have confirmed that TJ was thrown with a massive force on to the fence line, denying the argument of a bike accident. Also TJs bicycle was not presented in Court as evidence but remained as evidence of a police investigation. Perplexingly, when the bike was handed back to the Family, they noticed that both bike wheels had been replaced by new ones and did not show any damage caused by the ramming to the rear wheel as was shown in one of the TV news bulletin on that fateful Saturday evening.
The Court also blocked two witness (found by ISJA), that saw the Police Rescue Unit arrive and leave as instructed by Hollingsworth. The Coroner himself stopped the participation of a medically qualified Forensic Consultant, Dr. Carl Hughs, (also connected to ISJA) appearing for the Family. Despite the threat by the Counsel Assisting the Coroner to summon the mobile phone communications between the four police officers involved in the incident, it never happened. Also a police officer, who was a direct participant in the incident, was moved immediately from Redfern police station that weekend for his own safety, allegedly from the Block Community. He gave his testimony and after that he disappeared toward an unknown destination. Coroner Abernethy was scathing of the Community in their attitude to this officer.
NOW, NINE YEARS LATER still there are serious concerns about processes and outcomes of the police investigation, that amounted to a cover up, (again very common in Deaths in Custody), and also to the legal farce of the arranged Coronial Inquest. So, for the NINTH TIME, Gail, the Family, the Communities where TJ lived, ISJA and other supporters, continue to call for Justice, the reopening of a wider investigation into the facts, the non-appearance of witnesses and all other withheld evidence, to allow for a full forensic examination of the facts to reach an honest and Just conclusion.
NOW, NINE YEARS LATER, we have reissued the Petition calling for Justice for TJ and his Family. We need as many signatures as possible. You can download a copy from the ISJA site on Facebook, Stop Black Deaths in Custody Rally for 9th Anniversary of TJ Hickey 2013. Dont forget to post the signed pages to ISJA by 11th of February to 1303/200 Pitt Street, Waterloo, 2017. Please contact any one from ISJA or the Deaths in Custody Campaign for more petitions, leaflets and posters.
We need to put together as many signatures as possible and for many to join the march to the NSW Parliament House, headed by Gail Hickey and the Family on February 14th, 2013, after the rally at the fence line, George and Philip st, Waterloo, at 10.30 am. After the traditional minutes of silence, we will be marching to Parliament House after the traditional stop at the Redfern police station. After the march, Gail will be presenting the petitions to the Attorney General, Greg Smith, at Parliament House.
NINE YEARS IS JUST WAY TOO LONG to call for real Justice although other Deaths in Custody Families have fought for over 30 years. We have personally seen the physical and mental damage done to these Families and it is nothing but state-sanctioned torture by Governments and their police forces to allow these injustices to continue.
MANY MORE THAN NINE YEARS OF STRUGGLE gives to Ray Jackson, President of ISJA, the right to demand to Julia Gillard, who is talking about Aboriginal Recognition, What about recognizing over 400+ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Deaths in Custody since 1 January1980 and including those suicides/deaths in her racist NT Intervention?
NINE YEARS AGO we saw the TJ death as a continuation of the racist police action towards Aboriginal people in this country. Today we know that as it was true at the time, so was it in the Mulrunji, Mr Ward, Mr Briscoe cases, among so many others. What we also came to realize was that behind the protection of their police no matter what by Governments and Courts, the continuous enactment of laws empowering police, the provision to the Forces with new weapons (like water cannon, capsicum spray, Tasers) and the development of new tactics of crowd control, a riot squad, internet vigilance, engagement of some Community Organizations and Community Individuals, was a perfectly but anti-social orchestrated plan. This plan, aimed against our most elemental democratic and human rights, was enacted to stop active social dissent, to attack Aboriginal people, migrant and religious minorities first, and to also include ethnic solidarity organizations, antiwar groups, and broader protest groups like Occupy and workers like the Grocon protests in Melbourne and others who were deemed to be noncompliant/different and therefore dangerous to the Establishment.
NOW ON THE NINTH ANNIVERSARY OF TJDEATH we have to hugely multiply our efforts to get the broadest participation possible to allow us to neutralize the waves of police brutality and their indiscriminate and torturous use of Tasers and pepper spray.
Confronting us, however, is a particular sense of immunity instilled in the police by the lack of public and independent investigations of any incidents where police were involved that resulted in damages, injury or even death of people. The struggle for Justice for TJ and for Deaths in Custody is totally entangled in that constant battle between the oppressors and the oppressed. This battle is happening everywhere and it is very important that we must win it. Every win counts because every step forward brings the possibility to recover our diminished rights. Gail Hickey, the Family and their supporters dont want to have a TENTH Anniversary without Justice.
Join the struggle to make this a reality.
Ray Jackson & Raul Bassi
Ray Jackson is an Aboriginal elder, long campaigner for Aboriginal Rights, particularly Death in Custody and President of the ISJA (Indigenous Social Justice Association).
Raul Bassi is member of the ISJA and Socialist Alliance