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Schapelle Corby is a convicted criminal. Not a symbol of freedom or justice.

Schapelle has already released a book, My Story

KIDS, listen up. Getting done for drugs is not cool — it ruins your life.

But I understand how you could be a bit confused about that right now.

Schapelle Corby has been in prison for nearly 10 years. The deal she is being offered to tell her story to Channel 7 while on parole is said to be $2 million.

To average $200,000 a year for every year in jail is what most Australians would call a very good wicket. It is at least three times the yearly salary any nurse, teacher or childcare educator would earn.

The fact she was offered the money by a television network sends a warped message to our young people. It glorifies her story and ignores the fact she is far from being free.

She is on parole and therefore unable to leave Bali until 2017, during which time she will be monitored by police.

Seven News coverage of Schapelle’s trial.

Corby is not a celebrity. She is not an advocate for, or a symbol of, freedom or justice.

She is a convicted drug smuggler. She was 27 when she was found carrying a boogie board bag with 4.1kg of an illicit drug at Denpasar airport.

She has lost 10 years from the prime of her life, her career, missed family events and, at times, reportedly gone through severe emotional stress.

Indonesian authorities have warned against Corby doing any media interviews that could jeopardise her parole.

Former foreign affairs minister Alexander Downer recently suggested that — from a diplomatic perspective — the best approach the Corby family could have taken was to do no media — but they in fact did the opposite for many years.

Many observers have slammed the decision to offer a convicted drug smuggler such a large amount of money.

How do parents explain to their children that even though Corby was convicted of trafficking drugs, a media outlet will make her a millionaire?

It is now up to Channel 7 to make sure the children of Australia don’t get the wrong message — and they could start by donating a portion of the advertising profits from this interview to the Australian Drug Foundation.

This article originally appeared in The Daily Telegraph. It has been republished here with full permission.

Fiona is Executive Director of The Parenthood, an advocacy group for parents in 2014. The Parenthood represents a voice for all parents in the government business debates that effect our kids’ futures. You can join The Parenthood here: www.theparenthood.org.au

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