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.
Our 'Pharmacotherapies and Crime' seminar was a great success!
Tonight the Sydney Institute of Criminology and Corrective Services NSW partnered to host our annual Beyond Punishment event. The seminar was entitled, "Pharmacotherapies and Crime: the impact of drugs on offending behaviour". Over 120 people were in attendance as a panel of leading academics discussed the ethical dilemmas and evidence-based research around drug therapies in the criminal justice system. Dr Allan McCay acted as the chairperson of the event, and the speakers included Professor Tony Butler, Professor Michael Farrell, Professor David Greenberg, Associate Professor Barbara Meyer, Associate Professor Mitch Byrne, Dr Sascha Callaghan and Dr Maggie Hall.

The discussion included therapies which spanned from Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) aimed at reducing sexual offending to methadone treatments to reduce opioid dependence, and even included the ways that Omega 3s can affect prison violence. Each of the speakers gave a presentation of their work and concluded the event with a panel discussion. There was also a Q&A where the audience had the opportunity to ask questions.

This range of perspectives allowed for fascinating insights into the successes and challenges of pharmacotherapies in the criminal justice system. We extend our sincere thanks to all of the speakers who
shared their experiences and research, and to all of the audience members who attended.

Our next event will be a lecture from our Distinguished Speakers Program, given by Baroness Jean Corston, entitled: "Women in the Criminal Justice System: More often troubled than troublesome". Baroness Corston will speak on the background to the 2007 Corston Report on female incarceration, the findings and recommendations, and developments in policy and practice in the subsequent nine years since the report's release. For more information and to register, please visit our website.
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Upcoming Events
Still Rampant: Can a City Thrive Again?

Date: 17 August, 7:00pm-9:00pm
Location: Newtown, Sydney, NSW

In recent years there has been a crackdown on Sydney's nightlife that has had a disastrous impact on the culture and labour of its people. This event looks at the past and present of Sydney's nightlife and the government of social spaces.  It will include a screening of Rampant: How A City Stopped a Plague, (dir. Midwinter Pitt), a documentary that tells the remarkable story of how marginalised Australians became crucial players in Sydney's early response to HIV/AIDS, a response so successful it went on to influence health policies worldwide.

A panel of prominent figures will then discuss what can be learnt from our history of policy innovation and how it can be applied today. Topics of discussion include policing the night; reducing drug and alcohol-related harm and violence; maintaining diverse and inclusive spaces in our city; and communal creativity.

This event is an initiative of Unharm, a grassroots organisation that campaigns for safe, positive and ethical drug use , through decriminalisation and other measures. Proceeds will go to Unharm to support its community and advocacy work.

Confirmed Panellists:

-Julie Bates - Pioneering Australian activist for sex worker rights and
 the rights of people who use drugs
-Bridget Haire - President of the Australian Federation of AIDS
 Organisations, Research Fellow at UNSW's Kirby Institute and former Ms
-Tyson Koh - Campaign Manager of Keep Sydney Open and Producer of
 ABC's Rage.
-David Shoebridge MP - NSW Greens MP and strong advocate of civil
-Superintendent Frank Hansen APM - Chair of the Ted Noffs Foundation
 Board; drug & alcohol policy advisor with a career spanning 40 years in
 the NSW Police Force.


-Kane Race - Event Organiser, chair of Unharm's Queer Contingent 
-Will Tregoning - Director of Unharm

Tickets cost $21 for general admission and $10.50 for students and pensioners. Tickets can be purchased here.

UNSW Law Book Forum: The Role of the Solicitor General

Date: 7 September, 4:00pm-8:00pm
Location: UNSW, Sydney, NSW

UNSW Law Book Forum is a series that showcases recently published monographs by members of the UNSW Law Faculty. The format of each event is an ‘author-meets-reader’ encounter in which the UNSW Law author briefly presents the themes of their book, and then responds to critical readings offered by 2-3 specially invited external readers of the manuscript. The intent of the series is both to celebrate the achievement of our UNSW Law colleagues in publishing their books but also to critically engage them and to generate discussion within and beyond the Faculty.

In this upcoming Book Forum, Gabriel Appleby, Associate Professor at UNSW Law, will be presenting her book “The Role of the Solicitor General: Negotiating Law, Politics and the Public Interest"

Charing the Book Forum is Andrew Lynch (UNSW Law) and Gabrielle will be responding to readers:

Stephen Gageler 

Stephen John Gageler was appointed to the High Court in October 2012. At the time of his appointment he was Solicitor-General of Australia.  He is a graduate of the Australian National University and has post-graduate qualifications from Harvard University. He was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 1989 and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2000. Before his appointment as Solicitor-General in 2008, he practised as a barrister extensively throughout Australia principally in constitutional law, administrative law and commercial law.

Anne Twomey 

Anne Twomey is a Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Sydney.  She has previously worked for the High Court of Australia, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Research Service, the Senate Legal and Constitutional Committee and The Cabinet Office of NSW.  In her Cabinet Office work, she was frequently engaged in consulting the NSW Solicitor-General.

Yee-Fui Ng

Yee-Fui Ng is a Lecturer at RMIT University. She researches in the area of law and politics, focussing on the influences on the contemporary Executive, such as ministerial advisers and lobby groups. Yee-Fui was awarded the Monash Silver Jubilee Postgraduate Research Scholarship, as the highest ranking PhD applicant in the University, as well as the Monash Postgraduate Law Dean's Award, as the top-ranking PhD applicant in the Monash Law Faculty. Her book, Ministerial Advisers in Australia: The Modern Legal Context, will be published by Federation Press in 2016 as a finalist for the Holt Prize. 

This is a free event, but registrations can be made here.

Why did she take the pictures in the first place? Revenge Porn and the Law: Professional Development Seminar

Date: 31 August, 4:00pm-6:00pm
Location: Flinders University, Adelaide, SA

Flinders University's Centre for Crime Policy & Research and Victim Support Service presents a professional development seminar exploring the offence of 'revenge porn', examining the social, technological and legal context within which these offences are perpetrated. The remedies for such offences will be outlined including legislation, policy responses and victim supports.

Ticket Costs
$110 - Lawyers, Psychologists (CPD accrual) & other professionals
$50 - Professionals in govt and non-govt sectors
$25 - Students, volunteers and non-waged

To register for this event, please click here. The event's program can also be read in full here.

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Recent Publications
NSW Parliament Briefing Papter: "Illegal drug use and possession: Current policy and debates"

By Tom Gotsis, Chris Angus and Lenny Roth

Government policy to address illegal drug use and possession is an ongoing topic of debate both in Australia and internationally. One part of the debate surrounding illegal drug use and possession involves the question of whether or not recreational drug use should be decriminalised, as has occurred in overseas jurisdictions such as Portugal.

Another, and more immediate, part of the debate concerns the harms that have resulted from illegal drug use at music festivals. The NSW Government is reviewing the regulation of these events but has rejected options put forward by some stakeholders, including allowing pill testing and amnesty bins. The suggestion by drug law reform proponents that ice users be allowed to attend a medically supervised smoke inhalation room is also on the public agenda.

This paper seeks to inform the current debate by discussing:
• rates of illegal drug use and the harms of illegal drug use;  
• current Government policy and laws in relation to illegal drug use;
• the use and effectiveness of harm reduction measures, such as the Medically Supervised Injecting Centre;
• illegal drug use at music festivals; and
• arguments for and against prohibition and decriminalisation, with examples and evidence from Australian and overseas jurisdictions

The paper can be read in full here.

“Upholding whose right? Discretionary police powers to punish, collective ‘pre-victimisation’ and the dilution of individual rights"

By Dr Clare Famer

This article uses the example of Victoria’s alcohol-related banning notice provisions to explore the changing conception of balance within criminal justice processes. Despite the formalisation of individual rights within measures such as Victoria’s Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006, the discretionary power of the police to issue on-the-spot punishments in response to actual or potential criminal behaviour has increased steadily. A key driver, evident across the parliamentary debates of the banning legislation, is a presumed need to protect the broader community of potential victims. As a result, the individual rights of those accused (but not necessarily convicted) of undesirable behaviours are increasingly subordinated to the pre-emptive protection of the law-abiding majority. This shift embodies a largely unsubstantiated notion of collective pre-victimisation. Significantly, despite the expectations of Victoria’s Charter, measures such as banning notices have been enacted with insufficient evidence of the underlying collective risk, of their likely effectiveness and without meaningful ongoing scrutiny. The motto of Victoria Police – Uphold the Right – appears to belie a growing uncertainty over whose rights should be upheld and how.

The article can be accessed online here.

“Queer Penalities: The Criminal Justice Paradigm in Lesbian and Gay Anti-Violence Politics.”
By Dr Emma Russell

Building upon the renewed attention to the ways in which criminology may be ‘queered’ (or not), this article explores how a criminal justice paradigm has influenced lesbian and gay politics through an investigation of anti-homophobic research and lobbying focused on violence and harassment. It asks: What place does criminal justice occupy within sexual politics? Using the Australian state of Victoria as a case study, the article examines how the lesbian and gay anti-violence movement has utilized criminal justice theories, methodologies and approaches to explain and attempt to remedy ‘homophobic hate’. It provides three
inter-connected examples of the permeation of criminal justice logics: (1) the victimization survey method, (2) the focus on police reform, and (3) elements of a punitive public discourse surrounding homophobic hate crime. These examples are nevertheless complicated by the persistence of institutionalized violence and state failure to ‘protect’ lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) lives. These discursive practices contribute to ‘queer penalities’, a term used to describe the ways in which lesbian and gay movements shape and contest the social meaning of terms such as ‘crime’, victimization and punishment.

The article can be read online here.
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Job Advertisements
AIC vacancy - Senior or Principal Research Analyst

The AIC is currently seeking expressions of interest for a temporary placement at the Senior or Principal Research Analyst level for up to 12 months. Suitable candidates will have the opportunity to work on a diverse range of interesting and innovative projects, including in the areas of family and domestic violence, serious and organised crime, evaluation of criminal justice programs and initiatives and other areas of current and emerging interest to the AIC.

The Principal and Senior Research Analysts are required to:

  • Manage research projects
  • Produce high quality research reports
  • Manage the existing levels of contracted and ongoing work
  • Have skills in quantitative and/or qualitative research methods and experience undertaking applied policy relevant research
  • Have subject matter expertise in areas of crime and criminal justice relevant to AIC priorities
  • Work with Research Managers and the Director of Research to provide leadership across the AIC.

The AIC is seeking people with demonstrated research experience, postgraduate qualifications in criminology, law or relevant social science field.  A doctoral qualification in an area relevant to the research program is desirable.

Contracts will be offered for a period up to 12 months. The AIC anticipates undertaking selection processes for ongoing and longer-term vacancies during that time and staff contracted through this EOI process will be welcome to apply.

APPLICATIONS close: 19 August 2016 and MUST be completed through the ACIC website at ACIC careers. The duty statements for the positions are also available at ACIC careers.

ENQUIRIES: Karen Johnston Tel: 02 6243 6953

Solicitor - Legal Aid, Central Sydney
Social Justice Fellowships: Sydney Social Justice Network
The Sydney Social Justice Network ( SSJN) at the University of Sydney are proud to announce a new round of Social Justice Fellowships for 2016/2017. There are two sorts of Fellowships on offer a Community Justice Fellowship; and an Indigenous Justice Fellowship co sponsored by the Indigenous Research Collaboration (IRC) initiative.

These funded fellowships will enable practitioners and policy workers to spend time at the University working with established researchers on a project of their choice. Applicants will need to negotiate a secondment or work release from their workplace or sponsoring organisation.

To be eligible, applicants must have a first degree and/or relevant policy & research experience. Applicants must be available to attend the University for three months full time, or six months part time either from September 2016 to the end of November 2016, or from February 2017 onwards. Applicants must have support from their employer, or sponsoring organisation to take leave during this time. 

Applications close  22nd August at 5.00pm

For further information about either of these positions and an application form please contact: SSJN Program Coordinator Dr Elaine Fishwick at elaine.fishwick@sydney.edu.au
Post-Doctoral Fellow - UNSW Law
About the role
  • $87K  plus (9.5%  superannuation and leave loading)
  • Fixed Term until 30 October 2017
  • Full-time
The position holder will conduct legal and policy research within the Law and Policy Program of the Data to Decisions CRC. And work on a suite of projects addressing Practical perspectives on a balanced, enabling regulatory framework for data-based decision-support technologies used for law enforcement and national security in Australia.

To be successful in this role you will have:
  • A PhD in (or equivalent doctoral level qualification) in Law or another relevant field, such as Criminology
  • Communication skills, including excellent command of English language as well as the demonstrated capacity to collaborate with academics and others in person and virtually.
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct independent research and engage in high level analysis

You may be required to undergo pre-employment checks prior to appointment to this role

Applications close 28 August 2016 and can be made on UNSW's careers website.
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Awards and Grants
Nominations extended for the Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards

Nominations for the Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards have been extended to 19 August 2016. The annual Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards (ACVPA) recognise and reward good practice in the prevention or reduction of violence and other types of crime in Australia. This year, the ACVPA celebrates its 25th year. 

Nominations are open to projects of all sizes, including smaller initiatives involving local community groups. 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. You may nominate a project you are involved in, or a project that you believe deserves recognition.

Recipients are eligible to receive a cash prize to further support their crime and violence prevention projects. For smaller, community based projects, a cash prize of up to $15,000 can significantly improve the livelihood of those exposed to crime and violence.

For more information or to submit a nomination, please visit the ACVPA website.

Last Chance to Apply for the AIC Criminology Research Grants
The Australian Institute of Criminology invites applications from individuals or organisations seeking to undertake quality research which is relevant to both current and future Australian criminal justice policy and makes a substantial and original contribution to criminological knowledge.

The Institute encourages applications from organisations or collaborative teams with a demonstrated capacity to deliver high quality criminological research outcomes.

Application forms and further information are now available on http://crg.aic.gov.au/

Applications close at 5pm (AEST) on 12 August 2016

If you require more information, direct your inquiry to the CRG Administrator on 02 6243 6949, or email crg@aic.gov.au
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