Community sector advocates are calling for the major parties to address the "shocking" rates of Indigenous incarceration in the ACT.
The ACT Council of Social Service has called on all parties contesting the election to endorse a fairer justice policy.
Chief executive Emma Campbell said the territory's high rates of re-imprisonment - 90 per cent for Indigenous detainees - were unacceptable.
"It's a shocking reality that in the ACT Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children are locked up in youth prisons at eight times the rate of their non-Indigenous peers," she said.
"We also cannot accept the high over-representation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people and people with disabilities in our prisons," she said.
"The next ACT government must also invest to ensure equality before the law through improved access to justice by funding community legal centres, mediation, and individual advocacy services."
Dr Campbell said increased funding should be directed to specialist drug and alcohol programs with a focus on assistance rather than punishment.
"Up to 700 people access specialist alcohol and other drug services each day in the ACT, but funding gaps mean there are long waiting lists that send people to the [prison] instead of placing them in the treatment they urgently need," she said.
Women's Centre for Health Matters chief executive Marcia Williams said the rate of women in prison in the ACT had grown, yet they still lacked equal access to facilities and services.
"These women are disadvantaged by being housed in a men's prison, and the next ACT government must implement all the findings of the Inspector of Correctional Services' human rights-based review, which noted that there are limited opportunities for women to access rehabilitation programs and they have no access to the Transitional Release Centre," she said.
"Many of these women are mothers, and many are Aboriginal, and there will be a significant flow-on effect to their families due to their incarceration and high levels of recidivism, in part due to the struggle of obtaining secure housing when they leave the [prison]."