Who is the Aboriginal Offender?

Key in the Gladue Principles is that the Court needs to understand who the Aboriginal Offender is "as a person,” and what external barriers they have developed under.

People don’t become who they are in a void. Many external causes effect a person’s social, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual development. Family, community, and other external influences are relevant as to how all people react and response to exterior stressors in life. And therefore may be relevant for the court in sentencing.

Family dynamics, including family flexibility, cohesion and family resilience are independent variables as to the quality of life and ‘who the offender is’. The life domains that need to be considered for purposes of ‘restorative sentencing’ include such things as physical health, mental health, work/education, leisure activities, relationship with a significant other, family and social relationships, financial situation, independence/autonomy and an offenders religious/ spiritual expression.