Sydney Institute of Criminology
CrimNet is an electronic criminal justice information network, sponsored by the Sydney Institute of Criminology. It aims to fulfil the need for a means of regular and instant communication between criminal justice professionals, practitioners, academics and students in Australia and overseas.
Expression of Interest - NSW Department of Justice
Evaluate a trial of electronic monitoring of domestic violence offenders

The NSW Department of Justice is seeking interested persons to evaluate a trial of electronic monitoring of domestic violence offenders. Responses to the EOI are due on or before 24 August 2016. 

It is a Premier’s Priority for the NSW Government to reduce domestic violence reoffending by 5 percentage points by 2019, from 14.2% to 9.2%, which equates to a 35% actual reduction of reoffending. Electronic monitoring has been included in a program of interventions aimed at meeting this target.

The Department of Justice is trialling a new approach to electronic monitoring of offenders assessed as at high risk of domestic violence reoffending.  Electronic monitoring is intended to provide an alternative to remand or custody so that offenders can continue to function in the community, yet to act as a deterrent for the offender to reoffend against a victim. It also intends to act as a mechanism for providing an early warning to victims and increase scrutiny of an offender’s behaviour.  The project should improve short-term risk mitigation, allowing for a more proactive response through offender deterrence, greater control over risk management, and potentially provision of faster response times where a breach occurs.

Despite the growing popularity of electronic monitoring in offender management there is limited evidence on its effectiveness.  This is an invitation to provide a research proposal and quotation for undertaking an evaluation of this program.

The trial of electronic monitoring of domestic violence offenders commenced mid-2016 and is funded in the amount of $2.9 million over four years. An evaluation over two years (from November 2016 to October 2018) is required to inform suitability for program continuation and expansion.

For any questions regarding the EOI please contact either Kristen Daglish Rose, Policy Manager Domestic and Family Violence on 8346 1302 or kristen.daglish-rose@justice.nsw.gov.au or Jason Hainsworth, Director Strategy Community Corrections on 8346 1321 or jason.hainsworth@justice.nsw.gov.au
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Upcoming Events
Free Seminar: Pharmacotherapies and Crime: the impact of drugs on offending behaviour
Date: 9 August 2016, 6:00-8:00pm
Location: University of Sydney, NSW

This seminar brings together a number of experts to discuss the emerging evidence around pharmacological interventions and their impact on offending behaviour and recidivism.

How might drug treatments such as Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and anti-androgens interact with the criminal justice system? Do treatments like these mandate difficult actions on offenders, or do they enhance justice outcomes? How are they comparable to other well established treatments, such as opioid substitution therapies or cognitive behavioural therapy? And how do medical treatments engage with behavioural questions around offending? Are the side effects of such interventions mitigated by justice outcomes? What is the scope for coercive drug treatment? Criminal justice practice and historical theoretical thinking have long debated the biological aspects of offending and treatment.

This seminar will explore the evidence base for use of certain drugs and their individual impact on offending, including the critical ethical, moral and legal dimensions of their use.

Please join us for this first seminar of the 50th Anniversary 2016-2017 Corrective Services NSW Beyond Punishment seminar series, examining the possible futures of offender treatment.

Speakers include:Professor Tony Butler, Professor David Greenberg, Associate Professor Barbara Meyer, Associate Professor Mitch Byrne, Dr Sascha Callaghan and Dr Maggie Hall.

The evening will be chaired by Dr Allan McCay.

This is a free event but registration is essential. Please register here.
Aboriginal Children, Culture and the Law Symposium

Date: 5th-6th August 2016
Location: Newcastle, NSW

In order to draw attention to early intervention, prevention and family restoration services as a means of decreasing high rates of Aboriginal child removal in NSW, the ALS children's care and protection legal practice is holding a symposium on 'Aboriginal children, culture and the law' to which practitioners and the general public are invited to.

The symposium being held in Newcastle will include Judges, magistrates, Department of Family and Community Service representatives (FaCS), children’s care and protection lawyers and advocates, independent child representatives and out-of–home care agency workers.

Grandmothers Against Removals, a grass-roots collective of Aboriginal grandmothers across NSW who want government to change the child protection system, will also join the symposium to have their voices heard.

Symposium attendees will be talking about more prevention programs in place to help families keep their children safe and at home, more intervention programs to help children and families, and more family restorations so that children can one day go home again.

The 'Aboriginal children, culture and the law' symposium aims to demonstrate to government and service providers that the current rate of Aboriginal child removal in NSW, the highest rate in the country, is not sustainable, not economically viable, not culturally appropriate, and not best practice.

To learn more or to register for the event, please visit the ALS website. In addition, the ALS is accepting donations to assist grandmothers attending the event to share their perspectives. Donations can be made here.

UNSW Law presents the 2016 Hal Wootten Lecture: Lawyers and Politics delivered by Bret Walker SC
Date: 4th August 2016, 6:00pm-8:30pm
Location: UNSW, Sydney NSW

The 2016 Hal Wootten Lecture, delivered by Bret Walker SC under the title Lawyers and Politics, suggests tensions both problematic and productive for lawyers' participation in public life.

Bret Walker has been a barrister since 1979 and took silk in 1993. He has appeared many times in the High Court. His practice is now largely appellate and covers a wide variety of areas of law. Out of the courtroom, he has served as President of the Law Council of Australia and President of The New South Wales Bar Association. He is currently the nominee of the New South Wales Bar Association on the Legal Services Council; the new body responsible for the Uniform Law regulation of NSW and Victorian practitioners. 

He has conducted various governmental enquiries involving issues such as post-mortem practices, alleged hospital shortcomings and improvements to Sydney Ferries.  He was, during 2011-2014, Australia’s inaugural Independent National Security Legislation Monitor with a focus on counter-terrorist legislation and its operation.  In 2005 he delivered to the St James' Ethics Centre Lawyers Lecture, an address entitled Lawyers and Money

Doors open at 6pm for a 6.30pm start. The lecture will be followed by a cocktail reception. This event is free to attend, but please register for catering purposes. For more information and to register, please follow the link.
Citizens, Criminologists and Wayfarers: On Crime in the "Open City"
Date: Thursday 18th August 2016, 6:30-7:30pm
Location: Public Lecture Theatre, Old Arts, University of

Alison Young will be delivering a public lecture to inaugurate
the Francine V. McNiff Chair in Criminology in the School of Social and
Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne, entitled 'Citizens,
Criminologists and Wayfarers: On Crime in the "Open City"'.

The city has long been a space of industry, commerce, pleasure and connection. Cities are also places that require defence, their territories vulnerable to outsiders; and a city was declared ‘open’ when its defenders conceded it for occupation by enemy attackers. Contemporary societies still fear the ‘open city’, less as a result of enemy incursion than as the effect of unstable social relations within the city. Criminology attempts to understand how crime takes place in the ‘open city’, but has been unsure whether crime is a symptom, cause, or indicator of the precariousness of urban relations. This lecture investigates ways in which anxieties about the vulnerability of the open city dominate social, legal and political responses to crime. By walking through the changing neighbourhoods of the city, it proposes ways in which we can encounter crime in urban environments as citizens, criminologists and wayfarers, and argues for a more complex understanding of openness in the contemporary city.

To learn more about the event and to register, please follow the link.
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Recent Publications
Council Report Finds Substantial Decline in Sentenced Offending by Children
The Sentencing Advisory Council today released a report on the sentencing of children in Victoria. The report, Sentencing Children in Victoria: Data Update Report, focuses on children sentenced in the Children’s Court and the higher courts from 2010 to 2015 (inclusive). The report updates select sentencing data from the Council’s 2012 report Sentencing Children and Young People in Victoria.

The Council has found that sentenced offending by children in Victoria is rare. In 2015, only 0.6% of the Victorian population aged 10 to 17 received a sentence in the Children’s Court, less than one-third the equivalent rate for adults (2.1% of adults received a sentence in the Magistrates’ Court and the higher courts in 2015). Only one child was sentenced in the higher courts in 2015.

Key findings of the report include:
  • a decline of approximately 43% in the number of children sentenced in the Children’s Court over the six years to 31 December 2015
  • declines in the number of charges sentenced in the Children’s Court between 2010 and 2013 followed by an increase in the number of charges from 2013 – a substantial proportion of      these were new bail-related offences, in particular, the offence of ‘contravene a conduct condition of bail’ (now repealed for children)     
  • increases in the average number of charges per case in the Children’s Court since 2013, which, even after accounting for the new bail-related offences, indicate that a smaller number of offenders are being sentenced for more offences per case
  • a year-on-year decline in the number of children sentenced in the higher courts (the County and Supreme Courts), from 11 children in 2011 to only one child in 2015 (38 children sentenced in total)
  • a 25% increase in the number of children held on remand awaiting trial from a daily average of 43 children in 2010–11 to 54 children in 2014–15.

Further, the report analyses sentencing outcomes and changes in sentenced offences in the Children’s Court and higher courts in the six-year reference period. The Council found a marked increase in the proportion of justice procedures offences in the Children’s Court from 4.5% of all charges to 18.5% (coinciding with the introduction of bail-related offences) and a drop by more than half in the proportion of cases involving fatal or death-related offences (from 79% of cases to 34%) in the higher courts.

Sentencing Children in Victoria: Data Update Report is available from the Council's website. The Council has also prepared a fact sheet on the report’s key findings.
Women and Sex Tourism Landscapes
By Erin Sanders-McDonagh

Sexual spaces, normally inhabited by (mostly) female sex workers, are understood as masculine spaces, and positioned for and around male consumers. However, red light zones and public sex performances in both Thailand and Holland are being explored and visually consumed by female tourists in significant numbers. Their presence in red light districts and sexual venues is at odds with the ways in which sexual spaces have normally been positioned.

Woman and Sex Tourism Landscapes explores female tourists' interactions with highly sexualized spaces and places in two very different contexts: the Netherlands and Thailand. Addressing this incongruence, this text explores the ways in which these spaces are constructed, and examines the different relations that govern the management of, and female tourist interactions with these liminal, sexual zones. Ethnographic data collected in both countries suggests that far from being male-centred spaces, the red light districts and associated sexual entertainment venues are very much open to female tourists. Drawing on this research the author argues that some women are indeed interested in exploring sexualized zones, challenging assumptions about women’s involvements with sexual space. Thinking specifically about the visual nature of women's sexualized experiences, the analysis draws on a range of different theoretical understandings that address power, privilege, and the gaze.

An important contribution to a range of debates, this book will appeal to students and researchers in tourism, geography, sociology, gender studies and cultural theory. The book can be purchased here.

A qualitative study of reasons for seeking and ceasing opioid substitution treatment in prisons in New South Wales, Australia
By Sarah Larney, Deborah Zador, Natasha Sindicich and Kate Dolan

Opioid substitution treatment (OST) reduces drug-related harms in custody and after release. However, OST providers in prisons have reported that some patients prefer to cease treatment prior to release, placing them at risk of fatal overdose. This study aimed to examine reasons for seeking OST in custody, and intentions regarding continuation or cessation of treatment prior to and following release.

This qualitative study employed semi-structured interviews with opioid-dependent people currently incarcerated in New South Wales, Australia. Of 46 participants, 27 were currently in OST. Reported benefits of OST included withdrawal management and avoidance of high-risk injecting. Over a third of participants in OST stated their intention to withdraw from OST prior to release. Reasons included concerns that attending community OST clinics could lead to drug use or offending, family opposition, inconvenience of clinic attendance, stigma and a perception that prison provided an opportunity to withdraw from OST more easily than in the community. Nineteen participants had already ceased OST in custody or had declined it, citing preferences to ‘be clean’ and the long-term nature of OST.

Balancing the preference of many patients to cease OST prior to release against patient safety post-release is a substantial challenge for opioid treatment providers in correctional settings. These findings indicate the need for research on how best to attract and retain opioid-dependent prisoners in treatment and the need to provide other interventions for prisoners uninterested in post-release OST, such as take-home naloxone. [Larney S, Zador D, Sindicich N, Dolan K. A qualitative study of reasons for seeking and ceasing opioid substitution treatment in prisons in New South Wales, Australia. Drug Alcohol Rev 2016;00:000–000]

The article can be found here.
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Job Advertisements and Job Seekers
Solicitor - Legal Aid, Sydney NSW
Job Seeker - internationally experienced crime researcher looking for an academic position
Jude Roys Oboh is looking for an academic position to further his career in criminology and criminal justice. He is Nigerian born, completing his Ph.D. in Criminology (Utrecht University, the Netherlands). He is looking for a new challenge in academic criminology in Australia or elsewhere.

He started his career working for the Food and Agricultural Organization (United Nations) in various agricultural projects in Africa and the South Pacific. International commitments provided him the opportunity to learn several languages (including Italian, French, Dutch and English), and to live and work with people from different backgrounds.

With this broad experience, he switched over to criminology. West African criminal networks represent a new trend in international cocaine trafficking, among other crimes. He researched the Nigerian involvement in the Global Cocaine Trade (“Cocaine Hoppers”) for 10 years. His major research areas are: organized crime, drug trafficking, policing, crime/poverty and development in Africa, drug polices, environmental crimes, and qualitative research methods.

For the past 16 years, he has consulted for Dutch law enforcement agents in criminal investigation cases.

If you have any further questions for Jude about his experience or qualifications, please feel free to contact him at jroboh@icloud.com.

Research Officer - University of Technology, Sydney, NSW
The UTS Faculty of Health is recruiting for an outstanding Research Officer to work across a portfolio of National Health and Medical Research Council projects with a justice health focus. The Research Officer will work across a range of research activities contributing to the justice health research portfolio and assist in the analysis and outputs of results.
Main duties/responsibilities:
  • Complete a literature review of the role of health and correctional personnel in health service delivery to marginalised populations with a focus on Indigenous women in contact with the criminal justice system
  • Contribute to coding and analysis of interview data collected with health and correctional personnel as part of a national health research project in the area of social and emotional wellbeing and resilience of Indigenous women in prison
  • Contribute to consultation/external engagement processes with health and correctional personnel for the interpretation and translation of data
  • Provide secretariat support for a forum including a focus group to inform translation of findings and specific recommendations for health and correctional services for professional development and skills training among workers in the delivery of health services in NSW prisons
  • Contribute to the publication of high quality research in internationally recognised peer-reviewed academic journals, books and conferences
  • Contribute to grant applications for additional external research funding as agreed with supervisor
Applications close on the 1st of August. For more information or to apply, please follow the link.
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Volunteering Opportunities
Participate in NSW Police's Sydney CBD Emergency Management Exercise 2016
The New South Wales Police Force is calling on interested members of the public to participate in the 2016 Sydney CBD Emergency Management Exercise. The exercise is being conducted on Sunday 28 August, by the NSW Police Force, in conjunction with a range of NSW Emergency Service organisations, and is designed to test emergency management arrangements in case of an incident in the Sydney CBD.

This year's exercise is shaping as the largest emergency management exercise of its type ever held in NSW. NSW Police will be hoping to attract at least 300 volunteer role players. Volunteers will be required to play the role of members of the public who might have family friends involved in a large scale emergency.

All volunteers will be supervised during the exercise by members of an emergency service organisation. While the exercise itself will commence at 9am and is expected to conclude at 2pm, volunteers will need to be at Hickson Road Barangaroo by 8am for the official briefing and will be required to take part in a debrief at the conclusion of the exercise. Volunteers will be on their way home by 3pm.

Volunteers will also be provided with morning tea and lunch.

For more information or to apply to be a part of this exercise, please visit the NSW Police Force website.
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Awards and Grants
Last Chance to Nominate for the 2016 Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards

Nominations for the 2016 Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards (ACVPA) close Friday 29 July. 

If you know of or are involved in a local project that has helped reduce crime or violence in your community, the Australian Institute of Criminology encourages you to nominate that project. These awards recognise and reward good practice in the prevention or reduction of violence and other types of crime in Australia. The awards encourage public initiatives, and assist governments in identifying and developing practical projects which will reduce violence and other types of crime in the community. This year, the ACVPA celebrates its 25th year.

Any government agency, not-for-profit organisation or individual person making a significant contribution to a project in Australia can be nominated for an award. Projects may address specific groups such as rural and remote communities, women, children, youth, family, migrant, ethnic or Indigenous communities, or specific problems such as alcohol-related violence.

The ACVPA welcome entries from projects of all shapes and sizes, including government agencies, not-for-profit organisations and individuals making a difference.

In 2014, Kulture Break won $5000 for their Man Up program. Man Up aims to bring youth from all backgrounds together to learn skills, make connections, participate in mentoring and feel empowered through dance. Watch the video to find out how Kulture Break and 2013 winner White Ribbon’s Breaking the Silence schools program are making a difference in the community.

You can nominate a project on the Australian Institute of Criminology website.

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