People with disability are more likely to be victims of crime – here’s why

The Conversation, February 22, 2019 6.06am AEDT

Some of our most vulnerable citizens have been beaten, raped, and even killed at the hands of those supposedly caring for them.

The statistics are alarming. Up to 90% of women with disability have been sexually assaulted. And people with disability are three times as likely to die prematurely than the general population from causes that could have been prevented with better quality care.

But to provide victims with justice, we need to better understand why people with disabilities are more vulnerable to abuse and assault.

Report: Gay and Transgender Prejudice Killings in NSW in the Late 20th Century

ACON, May 2018

Australia has a long history of violence towards people from sexual and gender minorities, stretching from colonisation to the present day. This Report looks at what has been a tragic and shameful episode in Sydney’s history.

ACON, in conjunction with key partners, has undertaken a review of the initial list of 88
homicide cases that occurred during the period t from the 1970s through to the 1990s.

The key findings from this review include:

1. Homicides occurred in three main spaces, with majority of victims being killed in their own homes, followed by beats, and other locations which mostly include gay and other social spaces.

2. In general, there was little or no pre-existing relationship between assailants and their victims.

3. Where killings happened in the victim’s house, the victim was more likely to be known to the assailant, albeit in a minor way, whereas there was generally no existing relationship between the victim and assailant where the killing occurred at the beat or gay social spaces.

4. Generally, spaces where people were murdered were private, secluded or isolated, which meant the assailant was less likely to be interrupted, and this impacted the victim’s ability to call out for help.

5. The scenarios in all the spaces were commonly sexualised, or where people could be disinhibited by the consumption of alcohol and other drugs.

6. Assailants employed a variety of killing methods and, in general, inflicted several forms of violence upon their victims. The type of attack and the weapons used varied according to the location where the killings was carried out, whether in the victim’s home, at a beat or in gay social areas.

7. There is evidence of serial killings by gangs of young men as well as lone assailants.

8. From available information, it appears groups of assailants tended to kill their victims at beats or social spaces whereas individual assailants killed their victims in private residences.

9. There is information to indicate homophobia was likely involved in approximately 50% of listed cases; however the two cases involving transgender women do not appear to have been motivated by transphobia.

10. Of the initial 88 cases on the original list, approximately 30 remain unsolved.

ALHR: Government must do more to protect reproductive health rights

Lawyers Weekly, 22 March 2018

The leading advocacy group for human rights law in Australia has called on the federal government to better ensure the country is meeting its international obligations to protect women and girls when it comes to processes such as abortion. 

Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) spoke earlier this week in response to comments from Nationals MP George Christensen and incoming Senator Amanda Stoker, who – at an anti-abortion rally held in Queensland this past Sunday – said they would lobby Treasurer Scott Morrison to cease funding of family planning services that include abortion, both in Australia and internationally.

Lawyers back decriminalisation of sex work [in SA]

Lawyers Weekly, 02 June 2017

The Law Society of South Australia has voiced its support for a bill to decriminalise sex work in the state.

The select committee into the decriminalisation of sex work delivered its final report earlier this week, in the culmination of a two-year consultation process.

After a vote of four to three, the committee recommended that the bill, which will come before the South Australian Legislative Council, should be passed without amendment

 

Domestic violence training boost for South Australian doctors, health workers

ABC news, Posted

Domestic violence support funding will help train doctors and other health workers in South Australia to better respond to cases.

South Australia is getting nearly $1.5 million in federal funding over three years for efforts to tackle domestic violence in Adelaide’s northern suburbs.

Read more here

New website for FGM information in Australia

August 2015

No FGM Australia is a not-for-profit organisation which aims to protect Australian girls from female genital mutilation, and to support and empower survivors of FGM. They have recently launched their new website, which contains information resources, and a reporting mechanism for suspected FGM on Australian girls. 

Their resources are tailored to specific professions:

  • social workers
  • GPs
  • teachers
  • child care workers nurses & midwives
  • police
  • immigration officers
  • lawyers

There is also information on FGM and the law.

  • Access professional resources here
  • Access FAQs about FGM here
  • Report a suspected case of FGM involving a child – information here