Dear Friends of VSS

Welcome to Crime Victim enews for July/August 2019.

Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Issues

Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders suffer human rights violations in Australia
Thalia Kehoe Rowden, Human Rights Measurement Initiative, 2019
The Human Rights Measurement Initiative has released 2019 human rights data for Australia, with some disturbing results, including Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders being identified as particularly at risk of violation of all 12 human rights HRMI measures.

Disconnect: Not your mate [Transcript of audio podcast]
Ellie Rennie, Indigo Holcombe-James, Tyson Yunkaporta, RMIT University, 2019
Indigenous Australians are losing tens of millions of dollars to scammers every year. In this episode, we travel around the country to look at how online scams are being targeted to remote communities, and trace their story back beyond social media.

Indigenous Evaluation Strategy: issues paper
Productivity Commission, 2019
The Productivity Commission is developing a whole-of-government evaluation strategy for indigenous policies. This is a guide for preparing submissions - due by 23 August 2019.

Indigenous policy must be in Indigenous hands: harnessing indigenous experience
Justin McCaul, Policy Forum, 2019
Only learning from past mistakes will improve policies for Indigenous people, Justin writes.

Insights into vulnerabilities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 and over: 2019Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2019
This report presents new data on vulnerability experienced by older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. It brings together data from more than twenty sources.

Limited progress in closing the mortality gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians of the Northern Territory
T. Wilson, Y. Zhao, J. Condon, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 2019
Although Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander life expectancy has increased in the long run, the gap with all‐Australian life expectancy has not narrowed. The gap in under‐five mortality rates is lower than in the 1970s, but progress has been limited over the past decade.

Lived experiences of the Cashless Debit Card trial, Ceduna, South Australia [powerpoint presentation]
Eve Vincent, Centre For Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, 2019
The cashless debit card (CDC) quarantines 80% of working age recipients’ income support payments in selected trial sites. This paper concerns the lived experiences of Indigenous and non-Indigenous individuals subject to the first CDC trial in Ceduna, South Australia.


Child Protection

Nicole Paterson, Child Family Community Australia, 2019
This CFCA resource sheet provides information for practitioners and researchers on legal definitions of when a child is in need of protection for each Australian jurisdiction.

Beyond 18: The longitudinal study on leaving care - Wave 3 research report: Outcomes for young people leaving care in Victoria
S. Muir, J. Purtell, K. Hand, M. Carroll, Australian Institute Of Family Studies, 2019
This is the third and final research report for the Beyond 18 project.

Jade Purtell, Stewart Muir, Megan Carroll, Australian Institute of Family Studies, 2019
This report contains key findings from the second wave of data collection for Beyond 18.

‘Crossover kids’: vulnerable children in the youth justice system: Report 1: Children who are known to Child Protection among sentenced and diverted children in the Victorian Children’s Court.
Felicity Stewart, Sentencing Advisory Council (Vic), 2019
Report into the child protection backgrounds of children who received a sentence or diversion in the Victorian Children’s Court in 2016 or 2017.

Evaluation of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse teen and youth mental health first aid
Shameran Slewa-Younan [and 5 others], Western Sydney University, 2019
Research indicates that exposure to trauma, particularly on the part of refugee groups, in addition to resettlement challenges such as discrimination, low English proficiency, [and difficulties with] acculturation can contribute to poor mental health outcomes in these groups.

Taylor Fry, Their Futures Matter, 2019
This report is part of a landmark reform by the NSW government to deliver improved outcomes for vulnerable children, young people and their families. The report defines 6 key vulnerable groups who would greatly benefit from the development of new support systems.
Julie White [and 5 others], Victoria University, 2019
The study aimed to identify how improvements could be made to further support education inside custody. It also investigated how education has the potential to assist young people to imagine positive futures for themselves and bring their plans to fruition.

Supporting staff to work with children and families with complex needs: a checklist for organisations
Rhys Price-Robertson, Thy Meddick, Elise Parker, Emerging Minds, 2019
When organisations address the realities of working with families with complex needs, frontline staff are more likely to feel supported, confident and better able to respond to those families’ needs. This paper provides managers, practice leaders and other decision makers with practical guidance on supporting them.

Christine Tondorf, Pursuit, 2019
Children can’t sign up to Facebook until age 13 but in Australia they can be prosecuted for a criminal offence at age ten, and that needs to change.
Deloitte Access Economics for Advocate For Children And Young People (NSW), 2019
Estimates the economic cost of abuse and violence against children & young people in NSW.
Susan McVie [and 17 others], Economic and Social Research Council, 2019
This UK report draws together international research on the impact of childhood inequalities on life outcomes across a broad range of topics including education, crime and well-being.


Crime and Justice

For the latest crime and justice facts and figures, visit Crime Statistics Australia.
South Australian data – The Office of Crime Statistics and Research (OCSAR) has closed. Its core functions have shifted to the Justice Policy and Analytics group in the Attorney-General’s Department. Email for publications released by OCSAR or information on justice data. Available data can be viewed at
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2019
The four most common drugs that led clients to seek treatment were alcohol, amphetamines, cannabis and heroin.
Victorian Law Reform Commission, 2019
This issues paper draws on existing research in Victoria and other jurisdictions on the role of committal and pre-trial proceedings. Its publication marks the beginning of the Commission’s consultation period.
Catriona Mirrlees-Black, Law and Justice Foundation of New South Wales, 2019
This paper provides an overview of the options for, and challenges of, conducting legal needs surveys in Australia. It highlights the factors which must be taken into account when designing a cost-effective survey to support the delivery of effective legal assistance services.
Australian Human Rights Commission, 2019
This paper sets out the Commission’s preliminary views on the priorities for federal discrimination law reform. It identifies 11 priority areas for reform.
A. Cherney [and 4 others], Australian Institute of Criminology, 2019
Evidence-based policing advocates the use of scientific processes in police decision-making. This paper examines results from a survey of officers in the Queensland Police Service and the Western Australia Police on the uptake of evidence-based research.
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2019
This report looks at the relationship between homicide and all elements of development to explore how homicide rates affect development levels and vice versa.
Amnesty International, 2019
Gun violence in the USA is a human rights crisis. Over half a million people died of gunshot injuries between 2001 and 2017 and a further 1.3 million people sustained firearm-related injuries. This report focuses on the survivors of gun violence.
Catherine Emami, Russell G. Smith, Penny Jorna, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2019
This study aimed to identify and quantify the factors that make some individuals more vulnerable to consumer fraud than others. The findings offer ways to better target fraud prevention and education.
The Taskforce, Department of The Prime Minister And Cabinet (Australia), 2019
Comprising government and industry representatives, the objective of the taskforce was to provide advice to government on practical, tangible and effective measures and commitments to combat the upload and dissemination of terrorist and extreme violent material.
Economic and Social Research Council (UK), 2019
Autistic individuals are estimated to be 7 times more likely than the general population to come into contact with the Criminal Justice System. Research into how they are affected by police custody has led to new autism guidance for all police in the East Midlands, shaped the design of 'autism-friendly' custody cells, and changed police practice in supporting them in custody.
Royal Commission into the Management of Police Informants, 2019
This report outlines key events that led to the establishment of the Commission, including relevant reviews and court proceedings. It then sets out the Commission’s work to date.
SAPOL, 2019
Rick Brown, Anthony Morgan, Australian Institute of Criminology, 2019
“There is little evidence that Australia is on the same trajectory as the United States or Canada, or that fentanyl, particularly illicit fentanyl, has penetrated the Australian drug market as it has overseas. There is, however, evidence of an increase in harm associated with pharmaceutical opioids and heroin, despite a fall in heroin use.” (-AIC)


Domestic Violence

View the latest ANROWS research on domestic violence here

A realist review of which advocacy interventions work for which abused women under what
C. Rivas C [and 3 others] , Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 6, 2019.

Charmed and dangerous: a woman's guide to reclaiming a healthy relationship [booklet]
Women's Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Program, Legal Aid New South Wales, 2019
This short booklet for women in NSW outlines the cycle of abuse in domestic and family violence; and how to break free of controlling, abusive or violent relationships.

Australian National Audit Office, 2019
This audit assesses the effectiveness of the Department of Social Services’ role in implementing the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010–2022 (the National Plan).
Lyndal Sleep, ANROWS, 2019
This research explores the experiences of women who appealed Centrelink decisions about ‘the couple rule’, in cases where domestic violence was involved. The research examined publicly available Administrative Appeals Tribunal decisions.
ANROWS Notepad | 11 July 2019
Legal professionals can now access slides from a seminar held in June, which presented new findings on legal understandings of intimate partner violence. It explored homicide trials in which self-defence is raised by women who have killed an abusive intimate partner.
Australia's National Research Organisation for Women's Safety, 2019
This is the updated second edition of the ANROWS special collection on Perpetrators of domestic, family and sexual violence. This publication offers a guiding resource on Australian peer-reviewed publications and grey literature.
Peter Ninnes, Celeste Koens, ANROWS, 2019
The purpose of this volume is to document the use of action research in evaluating domestic and family violence prevention activities in 5 local government areas around Australia.
UN Women, 2019
This year's report focuses on gender and the family. It proposes a comprehensive family-friendly policy agenda to advance gender equality in diverse families.
Stella Tarrant, Julia Tolmie, George Giudice, ANROWS, 2019
This report examines how and why changes to the law of self-defence have not had their intended effects. It explores how legal professionals and experts understand IPV, influencing which facts are selected and presented as relevant in the criminal process.

Elder Abuse

Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, 2019
This paper provides an overview of the role of carers in supporting older people, the impact of caring and carer needs, and the available supports and services.
Elder abuse: Key issues and emerging evidence
A. Dean, Australian Institute of Family Studies, 2019.
Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, 2019
This paper summarises the key aspects of quality and safety regulation provided for in the Aged Care Act 1997 (Aged Care Act), the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission Act 2018 (Quality and Safety Commission Act) and supporting legislative instruments.
This website includes tools and resources to assist people prevent senior financial abuse.
Alice Clark, Matthew Tieu, Shelter SA, 2019
This report reviews the evidence (or lack of) behind the use of CCTV surveillance in Residential Aged Care Facilities in South Australia, and the associated risks and benefits.

 National Redress Scheme for Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse

Victim Support Service is a Redress Support Service provider.  We offer free and confidential trauma informed practical and therapeutic support to anyone considering applying to the National Redress Scheme.

The National Redress Scheme (Scheme) was created in response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.The Royal Commission recommended that Redress be made as a way of assisting survivors in their personal journey of healing.
Victim Support Service can provide information about the National Redress Scheme and who can apply.
Victim Support Service is funded by the National Redress Scheme to provide the following support to Survivors of institutional child sexual abuse:
-        Free and confidential counselling
-        Information and support to navigate the Redress Scheme
-        Assistance filling out the application
-        Support with understanding your Redress outcome
We can also liaise with Knowmore (free legal support service) for free legal advice throughout this process.
To speak to one of our National Redress Scheme Support Workers please call 1800 842 846 or email


LGBTIQA+ issues

Dylan Richards, Jessica Feehely, Tasmania Law Reform Institute, 2019
This paper reviews issues relating to the legal recognition of sex and gender, in light of amendments to the Justice and Related Legislation (Marriage and Gender Amendments) Act 2019. The Institute is calling for community feedback on the issues raised in this paper.


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
Gavin Coote, Linda Burney, Sarah Wendt, Karen Willis, ABC RADIO WORLD TODAY, 14 June
An audit of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children has cast doubt over its effectiveness, highlighting issues around monitoring and reporting.
Australian Communications and Media Authority, 2019
This report outlines the ACMA's investigation into coverage by Australian commercial, national and subscription television broadcasters of the Christchurch terrorist attack.



NAPCAN's National Child Protection Week 1-7 September 2019
NAPCAN's nationwide events are a great way to network and find out the latest information about prevention. We have fantastic speakers and activities lined up. Registration forms will be available soon.

National Missing Persons Week 4-10 August
“Individuals not statistics” National Missing Persons Week aims to raise awareness about the significant number of young Australians reported missing. Out of the estimated 35,000 people who are reported missing each year, approximately 20,000 are under the age of 18.
Australian Federal Police

White Balloon Day 6 September
Bravehearts' annual awareness and fundraising campaign to protect Australian kids from child sexual assault.

National Police Remembrance Day 29 September
The National Police Remembrance Day honours the memory of those police men and women who have given their lives in the service of the community.
Australian Federal Police



Child-Centred Approaches to Ending Family Violence
Children are often the silent victims of family violence; while they are not always heard or seen, they are always impacted by it. More than 68% of mothers who had children in their care when they experienced family violence said their children had seen or heard the violence.
18-20 September 2019. Melbourne, Vic.
Criterion Conferences

2019 STOP Domestic Violence Conference
Australian & New Zealand Mental Health Association’s annual conference for professionals vested in ending domestic and family violence.
9-11 December 2019. Gold Coast, QLD.
Australian & New Zealand Mental Health Association



Keeping Kids Central training: a child-centred approach [free online course]
Do you come into contact with children and young people affected by domestic violence? Keeping Kids Central is a free online training program developed by the Institute of Child Protection Studies. It can enhance your skills in adopting a child-centred approach.
Find out more: Email Program Manager Jacqui Stewart: sends e-mail) or Download the brochure from the Safeguarding Children website.
Australian Catholic University and Institute of Child Protection Studies

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)