Dear Friends of VSS

Welcome to Crime Victim enews for January/February 2019.


Victim Support Service -  News

Expression of Interest for Board Chair, Victim Support Service

The Victim Support Service Board is currently seeking expressions of interest from a suitably skilled and experienced Chairperson, to serve on the Board, and provide leadership, strategic direction and effective oversight of activities.
Please note that this is not a remunerated position although reasonable out of pocket expenses will be reimbursed. In addition, candidates need to be a full member of Victim Support Service or intend to become a member. 
Details of the requirements for the role are available here
Interested parties should email their Board related Curriculum Vitae and a short cover letter to the Chair at  by close of business on Friday 15 February 2019.
If you are not personally interested in this role, you are encouraged to forward this advertisement on to others you consider suitably experienced to apply for the position.  

Violence in the Lives of Incarcerated Aboriginal Mothers in Western Australia
Mandy Wilson, Jocelyn Jones, Tony Butler In Sage Open Volume 7, issue 1, 2017
Draws on in-depth interviews with incarcerated Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers in Western Australia. The results reinforce that Aboriginal women are overwhelmingly victims of violence; however, many women report also using violence, primarily as a strategy to deal with their own high levels of victimization. 

Impact of the ‘Yes, I can!’ adult literacy campaign on interactions with the criminal justice system
Jenny Wise (and 4 others), Australian Institute of Criminology, 2018
This paper examines service provider and criminal justice practitioner perspectives of the ‘Yes, I Can!’ adult literacy campaign. Interviews with 22 workers in regional New South Wales suggest the majority believe the program can improve the type and frequency of interactions between Indigenous Australians and the criminal justice system.

The Family Matters report 2018
Natalie Lewis (and 11 others), SNAICC - National Voice for our Children, 2018
Fewer than half of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are placed with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers, showing a steep decline over the last 10 years. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children who are removed from their families are at serious risk of being permanently disconnected from their families, communities and cultures.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Stolen Generations aged 50 and over
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2018
This report provides estimated numbers and demographic characteristics of the Stolen Generations survivors aged 50 and over in 2014–15. It presents data on a range of health and socioeconomic outcomes, and analysis of differences with an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander comparison group to examine the effects of removal from families.

Child Protection (see also Royal Commission)

Breaking barriers: a national adoption framework for Australian children
House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs, Parliament of Australia, 2018
All Australian children deserve to feel safe and loved and to have a strong sense of identity and belonging. Unfortunately there are tens of thousands of Australian children in out-of-home care who need a family they can belong to.

Children and young people in separated families: Family law system experiences and needs.
Carson, R., Dunstan, E., Dunstan, J., & Roopani, D., Australian Institute of Family Studies, 2018.

This qualitative study, commissioned by the Australian Government Attorney-General’s Department, investigated the experiences and needs of young people whose parents had separated and had accessed the family law system.

Material deprivation and social exclusion among young Australians: a child-focused approach
Peter Saunders (and 4 others), Social Policy Research Centre (UNSW), 2018
This report is the first of its kind to apply the deprivation approach to examine deprivation among young Australians  -using information provided by young people themselves. 

Safe, thriving and connected: generational change for children and families 2018 – 2023: first progress report
Government of the Northern Territory, Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory, 2018
One year on from the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory’s final report and six months into the reform journey, the Northern Territory government is making progress to improve support and services to families experiencing vulnerability and overhaul the child protection and youth justice systems.

Youth survey report 2018
Erin Carlisle (and 5 others), Mission Australia, 2018
Each year, Mission Australia encourages young people aged 15-19 to ‘speak up’ about the issues that concern them through Australia’s largest annual youth survey. Over 28,000 young people participated in 2018. For the first time, mental health was the number one issue of national concern in every Australian state and territory.


Crime and Justice

For the latest crime and justice facts and figures, visit Crime Statistics Australia

A Commonwealth Integrity Commission - proposed reforms
Attorney-General's Department (Australia), 2018
This paper provides an overview of the government’s proposed model for reforms directed at improving the current federal integrity framework by creating a Commonwealth Integrity Commission. 

Criminal histories of Australian organised crime offenders
Georgina Fuller, Anthony Morgan & Rick Brown, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2019
This study analyses the criminal histories of Australian organised crime offenders. Most offenders associated with organised crime groups did not commit their first offence until adulthood; nearly one-third were aged 25 years or older when they committed their first offence.

Evaluation of the ReBoot Intensive Intervention Trial: Final report
Samantha Lyneham, Isabella Voce, Georgina Fuller & Hayley Boxall, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2018
The ReBoot program was designed to assist young people in Adelaide who are in contact with the criminal justice system and at risk of reoffending. It works with young offenders aged 14–18, their families, communities and the justice system to reduce offending and antisocial behaviours.

Exploring the relationship between organised crime and volume crime
Rick Brown & Russell Smith, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2019
Volume crimes such as burglary, theft, criminal damage, drug possession, assault and fraud are often treated in popular discourse as a separate category of criminal behaviour to crimes committed by organised criminal groups. Yet in reality there is considerable overlap, with organised criminal groups involved in various forms of volume crime.

Seeds of Affinity: Supporting women transition from prison into the community (website)
This South Australian organisation supports and empowers women both during and upon their release from prison.

Understanding law enforcement information sharing for criminal intelligence purposes
Rick Brown, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2018
There are a number of legislative, technical and cultural barriers that limit the free flow of information between Australia's law enforcement agencies. This report examines those barriers and develops an information sharing matrix that explains the barriers associated with different types of information sharing.


Domestic Violence

View the latest ANROWS research on domestic violence here

Australians’ attitudes to violence against women and gender equality
Kim Webster (and 10 others), Australia's National Research Organisation for Women's Safety, 2018
This report documents findings from the National Community Attitudes towards Violence against Women Survey and considers them in the context of other related research. It provides greater detail about the concepts measured in the survey, survey findings and implications for policy, program development and practice.

Coercive control: Impacts on children and young people in the family environment
McLeod, D. IN Research in Practice (UK), 2019.

It is recognised that coercive control is a key feature of abusive relationships. It is therefore essential that the conceptualisation of coercive control and the impact it has on the whole family is recognised and understood.
Intimate partner violence in Australian refugee communities
Alissar El-Murr, Australian Institute of Family Studies, 2018
This paper looks at what is currently known about intimate partner violence in Australian refugee communities, and what service providers can do to ensure appropriate support is available to this client group.
Is methamphetamine use associated with domestic violence?
Christopher Dowling & Anthony Morgan, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2018
There is evidence that methamphetamine users are more likely than non-users to perpetrate domestic violence. Importantly, methamphetamine use is frequently present along with other risk factors. This means methamphetamine use probably exacerbates an existing predisposition to violence, rather than causing violent behaviour. 
No to violence: Men’s Referral Service (website)
An Australian service for men who are experiencing Domestic Violence.
Path to Nowhere (report)
National Advocacy Group on Women on Temporary Visas Experiencing Violence and AWAVA, 2018
Women on temporary visas and their children face specific barriers to seeking support, particularly the fear of deportation, fear of losing custody of their children, and lack of access to services. Perpetrators of violence use these barriers to maintain power and control over these women. This report provides survey results and case studies illustrating their plight.  
Policing domestic violence: A review of the evidence
Christopher Dowling, Anthony Morgan, Chloe Boyd & Isabella Voce, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2018
Findings indicate that police can influence the likelihood of further violence, victim satisfaction and wellbeing, and criminal justice outcomes. Improvements to the policing of domestic violence should focus on optimising the implementation and effectiveness of police responses.

Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

The Royal Commission has released its final report. View past information about the Commission here

Implementation of recommendations from the final report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse: annual progress report 2018
Attorney-General's Department (Australia), 2018
This report highlights the progress being made across the Australian government to implement the recommendations made in the Royal Commission’s final report presented to the Governor-General in December 2017.

National Redress Scheme - South Australia joins the Redress Scheme

The Government of South Australia has joined the National Redress Scheme, which provides acknowledgement and support to people who experienced institutional child sexual abuse, from 1 February 2019.  The Scheme was created in response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which estimated that 60,000 people experienced institutional child sexual abuse in Australia.

The Scheme started on 1 July 2018 and will run for 10 years. From 1 February, 2019, people who were abused in South Australian government institutions are eligible for redress under the Scheme.

People who experienced institutional child sexual abuse that occurred in South Australian non-government institutions (such as church bodies, charities and community organisations) that have declared their participation in the Scheme may also apply to access redress.

Redress is an alternative to seeking compensation through the courts. The Scheme can provide three things:

  • access to counselling
  • a payment
  • a direct personal response from the institution (e.g. an apology) for people who want it.

VSS is providing a Redress Support Service and we can be contacted on 1800 842 846.


Trauma and mental health

Scientists discover why fears and traumatic memories recur
University of Queensland, 7 Feb 2018
Queensland Brain Institute scientists have discovered a new pathway in the brain that regulates the return of traumatic memories and fear. The research has potential implications for treating trauma-related disorders, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The social and economic benefits of improving mental health: issues paper
Productivity Commission, 2019
The Productivity Commission has been asked to undertake an inquiry into the role of mental health in supporting social and economic participation, and enhancing productivity and economic growth. This issues paper outlines a range of issues on which the commission is seeking information and feedback.


In the Media

Recent ABC media reports on Law, Crime and Justice can be viewed online here
Recent South Australian news can be viewed here

‘Hell’s angel’ - Ann O’Neill: turning grief into good (TV program)
ABC Television, Australian Story, 26 November 2018

More than half of women killed in 2017 died at hands of partner or relative
SBS, 27 November, 2018

Why are our prisons full of domestic violence victims?
Hayley Gleeson with Julie Baird, ABC News, 20 December 2018

Victims’ Rights Commissioner considers action to close legislative loophole that can leave victims in the dark on charges
Lauren Novak, The Advertiser, December 27, 2018

Children are at risk because judges cannot rule on violence early enough 
Emma Smallwood, The Guardian, 7 January 2019

Domestic violence and a simple tool called the 'No Test' could identify an abusive partner
ABC News, January 31, 2019

Behind closed doors (subscriber only content - contact The Advertiser to see fulltext) 
Lauren Novak, The Advertiser, SA Weekend Magazine, February 2, 2019



Ochre Ribbon Week, February 12-19th 2019
Ochre Ribbon Week raises awareness of the devastating impacts of family violence in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and calls for action to end the violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people – especially women and children. To support the Ochre Ribbon Campaign, go to

International Women's Day Forum, March 4, 2019
Celebrating migrant and refugee women's achievements. 9.30am-2.30pm at Adelaide Festival Centre. Register by completing registration form and returning it via email to before Monday 25 February.
Council of Migrant and Refugee women, Australian Migrant Resource Centre, in association with OFW, MECCSA, ACCSA



Connecting Up 2019 Conference
This year's event will be themed 'Transform' and will focus on providing not-for-profits with the advice, tools, capabilities and inspiration they need to transform to have the greatest impact possible.
8-10 May 2019. Melbourne, VIC.
Connecting Up

Queensland Indigenous Family Violence Prevention Forum 2019
The 15th Annual Forum. This two-day forum will host experts from research, practice and community to share knowledge and introduce new approaches to increase support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people impacted by domestic and family violence. Registration fees:   $475-525
15-16 May, 2019. Mackay, QLD.
Queensland Centre for Domestic and Family Violence Research

Lowitja Institute International Indigenous Health & Wellbeing Conference 2019
This international conference will discuss the role of First Nations in leading change and will showcase Indigenous solutions from around the world. The conference program will highlight ways of Thinking, Speaking and Being for the benefit of Indigenous peoples everywhere.
18 June, 2019. Darwin, N.T.
The Lowitja Institute



Pathways to Empowerment program
This is a 9 week trauma-informed, work-ready pathway to further education/work program aimed at women who have experienced domestic violence.
Term 1, 2019 : Wednesdays – 6 February- 3 April, 2019. 9:30 am – 2:00 pm. Lunch provided.
Location to be advised on registration (Hackham area)
To register and for further information: email or call the Zahra Office on 83521889
Zahra Foundation
E-safety Women (Women’s E-safety workshop)
Empowering women to take control online - two hour workshop on technology facilitated abuse.
Safe access to technology is crucial for women so they can stay connected to their family and friends, engage with the world and get information and support. A FREE 2 hour workshop presentation has been created by The Office of eSafety Commissioner, WESNET and the Department of Social Services regarding technology facilitated abuse and its relationship to domestic and family violence.
To register your interest in attending please email
12 February, 2019. 9.50am-12noon. Naylor House, 120 Flinders Street, Adelaide, S.A.
The Office of eSafety Commissioner and SA Housing Authority

Small Change Workshop – Resume Builder
One day FREE workshop for women who have experienced domestic or family violence at some point in their lives. Women who attend will get support in a safe environment to explore creating their resume – with up to date template advice and how to write compelling content.
Limited places. For more information or to register, contact the Zahra Foundation office on 8352 1889
6 March, 2019, 9:30 am – 2:00 pm. Adelaide, SA - address provided on registration.   
Zahra Foundation

Recognise and respond to disclosures of rape and sexual assault – 1 day training for professionals.
This training is designed for workers in all areas of human services and health care. The focus will be on providing knowledge, skills and attributes necessary to provide appropriate trauma informed responses to adults who have been raped or sexually assaulted. Cost $150 (inc GST), $100 for students.
Book online at
27 March, 2019. 9.30am-4.30pm. Yarrow Place, North Adelaide, SA.
Yarrow Place

1800 VICTIM (1800 842 846)

1800 842 846

Port Lincoln (Lower Eyre), Whyalla (Upper Eyre), Port Augusta (Far North), Port Pirie (Yorke & Mid North), Berri (Riverland), Murray Bridge (Murraylands), Mount Gambier (Limestone Coast)