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.
BOCSAR Releases NSW Recorded Crime Statistics quarterly update June 2016
This week, the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) released their quarterly report on the rates of key crimes across the state over a 24 month period. In the two years leading up to June 2016, there were significant downward trends in nine different crimes in NSW. These were:
  • murder (down 32.1%);
  • robbery without a weapon (down 25.9%);
  • robbery with a firearm (down 41.7%);
  • robbery with a weapon not a firearm (down 22.2%);
  • break and enter dwelling (down 7.2%);
  • motor vehicle theft (down 12.6%);
  • steal from dwelling (down 6.6%);
  • steal from person (down 9.9%);
  • malicious damage to property (down 3.2%)
Each of these above crimes, as well as some others, are now occurring at lower rates in NSW than they were 20 years ago. Additionally, shootings are at their lowest point in 20 years. However, two offences trending upward over the 2 years before June were steal from retail store (up 6.3%) and fraud (up 1.7%).

To read the full report, please visit BOCSAR's website.
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Upcoming Events
Professional Development Courses
This year, the Sydney Institute of Criminology at the University of Sydney has hosted a range of Professional Development Programs to help staff in the criminal justice field enhance their skills and knowledge in different areas.

Our next event is the Motivational Interactions Course on the 29th of September. This training is designed to provide participants with the appropriate skills and knowledge to engage with offenders and build rapport with a view to developing and promoting opportunities for change talk.

This criminology course will assist you to:
  • Establish rapport with an offender.
  • Recognise and enhance change talk.
  • Build and maintain professional relationships.
  • Utilise a decisional balance sheet.
  • Encourage personal responsibility.
  • Apply the Transtheoretical Model.
This criminology course will specifically provide participants with information and tools to enhance skills and knowledge to engage with an offender who is presenting as ambivalent about change and the tools can be applied to a variety of change scenarios. This course will be delivered by an accredited Corrective Services NSW Trainer. It will be especially relevant to anyone interested in a career in corrections.

Our other events include:
Psychology of Crime Course - 15th of October
Working with AOD Offenders Course - 18th of October
Building Ethical Organisations: A Practical Guide to Corruption Prevention - 22nd of November
Baroness Jean Corston lecture: 'Women in the Criminal Justice System: More often troubled than troublesome'
Date: 13 September, 5:30pm
Location: University of Sydney, NSW

After the death of six women who were incarcerated at HMP Styal in the UK in 2003, The Right Honourable Baroness Corston published a 2007 report about women in the criminal justice system. This became known as the Corston Report. The Report focused on the diversion of women offenders and potential offenders away from criminal behaviour through the provision of women-focused policy and services.

The UK Government implemented 41 of the 43 recommendations in the Corston Report. The main outcome has been the expansion of community justice centres, as an alternative to prison. These 'one-stop-shops' for female offenders have been implemented to reduce recidivism and deter criminal behaviour by addressing the social, health and welfare issues that are unique to women.   In her Distinguished Speakers lecture, Baroness Corston will speak on the background to her report, the findings and recommendations, and developments in policy and practice in the subsequent nine years since the report's release.

Registration (inc. GST)*
Full fee = $15
University of Sydney alumni = $10
Full time student = $10
*Cost includes cocktail reception following the lecture

Registration will commence at 5.30pm, for a 6-7pm lecture followed by a cocktail reception. For more information and to register, please visit our website.
Paul Byrne Memorial Lecture delivered by Stephen Odgers SC- Uniform Evidence Law at 21
Date: 17 October 2016, 5:45pm - 7:00pm
Location: University of Sydney, NSW

It has been 21 years since NSW and the Commonwealth enacted uniform evidence legislation (UEL), largely based on the work of the Australian Law Reform Commission. Since then a number of other jurisdictions have followed suit (Victoria, Tasmania, A.C.T., Northern Territory). The legislation has introduced a number of important reforms in the law of evidence, particularly in criminal proceedings, and has on balance been a successful exercise in law reform.

However, there have been problems, some the consequence of judicial construction of the UEL, requiring amendment. In 2005, the Australian Law Reform Commission (along with the NSW and Victorian Law Reform Commissions) proposed changes to the 10-year-old UEL and these were subsequently enacted. Now the UEL is 21 and it is time to consider new amendments - partly to deal with problems that have arisen in the last decade, partly to ensure proper implementation of the policy framework around which the legislation was constructed. It is also time for the remaining hold-out jurisdictions (Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia) to adopt the UEL.

To learn more and to register for the event, please visit this website.
QUT seminar: Regulation in the Security Space
Date: Monday 12th September 2016, 12-1pm, lunch provided
Location: U214, Level 2, U Block, QUT Gardens Point Campus, Brisbane

The Crime and Justice Research Centre are hosting an upcoming seminar on Regulation in the Security Space with speakers Dr Roger Clarke and Dr Monique Mann. 

Please RSVP by Friday 9th September 2016, along with any dietary requirements to am.gurd@qut.edu.au

Presentations for this seminar include:


The abstract notion of ‘security’ is subject to many different interpretations. These depend in particular on which stakeholder is concerned about harm to which values associated with which assets. As the aphorism has it: ‘a Conservative is a Liberal whose kid’s bike has just been stolen’. These issues are relevant in information technology contexts in general, and Internet / ‘cybersecurity’ contexts in particular. The spectrum of regulatory forms is reviewed, noting the steady drift from ‘government’ to mere ‘governance’. A series of test-cases is then considered, in order to gain some insights into the effectiveness of contemporary approaches to security regulation. The cases include PIAs for national security initiatives, natural and imposed controls over big data analytics, and the current challenges of the ‘Internet of Things’, remotely-piloted drones, and autonomous cars. Finally, the notion of a ‘data protection impact assessment’ (DPIA) that is embedded in the European Commission’s GDPR is compared with a normative model of what a PIA should look like. The test-cases suggest that the public is confronted by a wide array of regulatory failures. These may be attributed variously to failure by executive and legislative branches to apply evaluation standards to initiatives – particularly where the ‘national security’ mantra is invoked, to their excessive desire to stimulate business activity, and to the exercise of power by corporations over governments.


There has been a rapid expansion in the type and volume of information collected for security purposes following the terrorist attack in 2001. This event was a catalyst for increased investment in surveillance technology by governments around the world. New technology, biometric identification and other developments such as metadata retention provide an increasingly comprehensive picture of citizens’ lives. The expanding use of biometric information for security purposes poses new challenges for the protection of individual rights. The first part of the presentation describes Automated Facial Recognition Technology (AFRT) and its law enforcement and border security applications, as well as its integration with image sources such as closed circuit television, social media and big data. This also includes an examination of the increasing centralisation of police information systems in Australia and around the world. These developments are reviewed against the backdrop of tension between individual privacy rights and collective security objectives. The second part of the presentation examines the existing privacy framework in Australia, arguing the legal system has lagged behind technological advancements, leading to a significant governance gap. This is followed by a review of current oversight models, one of the most prominent being a biometrics commissioner to oversee the retention of sensitive personal information by government.

For more information, please visit the event website.
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Recent Publications
The Impact of Delayed Reporting on the Prosecution and Outcomes of Child Sexual Abuse Cases
By Judy Cashmore, Alan Taylor, Rita Shackel and Patrick Parkinson

Our Institute members Judy Cashmore and Rita Shackel, alongside their colleagues Alan Taylor and Patrick Parkinson, have released a key report commissioned by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

On Friday 11 January 2013, the Governor-General appointed a six-member Royal Commission to inquire into how institutions with a responsibility for children have managed and responded to allegations and instances of child sexual abuse. The Royal Commission is tasked with investigating where systems have failed to protect children, and making recommendations on how to improve laws, policies and practices to prevent and better respond to child sexual abuse in institutions.

The Royal Commission has developed a comprehensive research program to support its work and to inform its findings and recommendations. The program focuses on eight themes:

1. Why does child sexual abuse occur in institutions?
2. How can child sexual abuse in institutions be prevented?
3. How can child sexual abuse be better identified?
4. How should institutions respond where child sexual abuse has occurred?
5. How should government and statutory authorities respond?
6. What are the treatment and support needs of victims/survivors and their families?
7. What is the history of particular institutions of interest?
8. How do we ensure the Royal Commission has a positive impact?

This research report falls within theme 5. The research program means the Royal Commission can:

- obtain relevant background information
- fill key evidence gaps
- explore what is known and what works
- develop recommendations that are informed by evidence, can be implemented and
-respond to contemporary issues.

The full report is available to read online here.

Victims and the Criminal Trial

By Tyrone Kirchengast

This book addresses the idea that victims remain contested and controversial participants of justice in the twenty-first century adversarial criminal trial. Victims are increasingly participating in all phases of the criminal trial, with new substantive and procedural rights, many of which may be enforced against the state or defendant. This movement to substantive rights has been contentious, and evidences a contested terrain between lawyers, defendants, policy-makers and even victims themselves.

Bringing together substantial source materials from law and policy, this book sets out the rights and powers of the victim throughout the phases of the modern adversarial criminal trial. It examines the role of the victim in pre-trial processes, alternative pathways and restorative intervention, the jury trial, sentencing, appeal and parole. Preventative detention, victim registers, criminal injuries compensation and victim assistance, restitution and reparations, and extra-curial rights and declarations are examined to set out the rights of victims as they impact upon and constitute aspects of the modern criminal trial process. The adversarial criminal trial is also assessed in the context of the increased rights of victims in international law and procedure, and with reference to policy transfer between civil and common law jurisdictions. This timely and comprehensive book will be of great interest to scholars of criminology, criminal law and socio-legal studies.

Tyrone Kirchengast is Senior Lecturer in Criminal Law at the University of New South Wales, Australia. His research focuses on criminal law and justice, with particular interest in victims of crime, comparative criminal justice, and the development of institutions of criminal law and justice. He has published widely on the integration of victims in the criminal trial and is the author of The Victim in Criminal Law and Justice (2006), The Criminal Trial in Law and Discourse (2010) and Criminal Law in Australia (with L. Finlay, 2014).

The book can be purchased online here.

How open are your doors to forensic clients? – Australian Community Support Organisation’s Forensic Services Standards

In alignment with their vision to create a safe and inclusive community freed of crime and prison, ACSO (the Australian Community Support Organisation) have developed a set of standards to help the community be accessible and responsive to clients in the justice system. 

ACSO identified that amongst the suite of quality assurance standards that organisations are assessed against, the specialist needs of clients with a criminal history are not accommodated, in any Australian jurisdiction. They acknowledge that there are comprehensive guidelines for corrective services, but a noticeable absence of standards for offenders who are clients of community welfare organisations.

ACSO invested in the development of this resource with the objective to share this resource with the community sector, including organisations that may not normally work this client group.

The Standards are supported by an Implementation Guide that provides a summary of the intent behind the development of each of the Standards and a Self-Assessment Tool to facilitate the organisation to reflect on their current processes. They encourage organisations to use these resources to further enhance the access, quality and responsiveness of their services and support to this specialist client group. They are available for free download via ACSO’s website.

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Call for Abstracts
Submissions closing soon for the Applied Research in Crime and Justice Conference

Date: 15-16 February, 2017
Location: Dockside Function Centre, Sydney, NSW

The NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, in partnership with the Griffith Criminology Institute, is convening the 4th annual Applied Research in Crime and Criminal Justice Conference. This conference will showcase high quality Australian and international research in the areas of policing, offender rehabilitation, situational crime prevention, corrections, early-intervention and criminal justice administration. 

The event is intended for both researchers and policy makers. Officers from all levels of government will have the opportunity to see how new research might assist them in developing more effective, more efficient and more equitable ways of managing crime and justice.

Researchers are invited to submit an abstract for consideration by 16 September.  Note that speaker spots are limited and selection will be competitive. Policy relevant empirical research in the following areas will be considered favourably: 

- Situational crime prevention
- Domestic and family violence
- Early intervention and juvenile crime
- Offender rehabilitation
- Criminal Justice Administration
- Policing
- Corrections

For more information on how to submit an abstract, please visit the event website.
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Networks to join
International Network on Public Sexual Harassment (INPSH)
The International Network on Public Sexual Harassment (INPSH) is a new community of academics, activists, researchers, and specialist women’s organisations from around the world who are involved in ending the sexual harassment of women in public spaces. The network is co-convened by Dr Fiona Vera-Gray (Durham University, UK), Dr Jaya Gajparia (London South Bank University, UK), and Dr Bianca Fileborn (La Trobe University).

The network and mailing list is to enable us to coordinate better. Please use it to share your new research, latest campaigns, policy change, recent victories, resources, calls for collaboration/research participation, funding opportunities, upcoming events, or your other activities related to the sexual harassment of women in public. 

Public space here can be defined as a social space that is presented as being open and accessible to everyone, including both physical and online spaces, as well as spaces that may be owned privately for public use, such as public transport, or bars, pubs, and other gig venues. Posts that consider the ways in which women are situated in different ways in terms of availability of and access to public space (such as Black women, women of colour, lesbian women, queer women, deaf and disabled women, transgender women, and gender non-conforming women) are encouraged.

To subscribe, please email inpsh@durham.ac.uk or B.Fileborn@latrobe.edu.au
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Spotlight on new Australian initiatives
Fruit2Work Helps Former Offenders Find Employment While Keeping Workplaces Healthy
For former offenders, employment is strongly linked to decreased rates of reoffending, gains in confidence, an increased sense of self worth and financial security. But unemployment amongst former offenders, even after completing parole, is rife.

There are a number of barriers to employment for a former offender including.
  • Lack of skills and relevant work experience
  • Low confidence
  • Employer stigma
  • Mandatory appointments during normal work hours, e.g. random drug testing, clinician appointments

Barwon prison psychologist Doron Lavan and management consultant Ariel Hersh aim to address this in their new organisation, Fruit2Work. Fruit2work provides premium fruit boxes to offices in Melbourne and their employees collect, pack and deliver the fruit. They have partnered with two charities (TaskForce and First Step) to hire former offenders into these roles as part of a transitional 6-month Back2work program. Participants will receive:
  • Consistent paid employment
  • Ongoing counselling and mentoring
  • Work-skills training
  • Long term employment assistance

Every fruit box helps Fruit2Work create more jobs for former offenders. If you would like to support this new program by purchasing fruit boxes for your workplace, please visit their website.
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Job Advertisements
Intelligence Analyst - North West Metropolitan Region Office, Parramatta - NSW Police Force

The purpose of this full-time position is to provide high quality intelligence advice and support to the command in relation to crime, community and management issues affecting policing operations through planning, researching and analysing information.

The Intelligence Analyst has a number of key accountabilities, being:

- Work closely with and provide intelligence to LAC Intelligence Supervisors and Crime Managers as well as other LAC/ Region personnel.

- Research, collate and analyse data and statistics on crime and policing trends across the LAC/Region.

- Establish networks/relevant links with local community groups, other organisations and businesses.

- Provide useful and relevant data and intelligence to support investigations, operations and programs conducted within the LAC/Region.

-Maintain confidentiality and adhere to procedures regarding the security of information.

Applications close at 11:59pm on the 18th of September. For more information, please follow the link.

Family Law Solicitor - Cairns, QLD

North Queensland Women’s Legal Service (NQWLS) is a not for profit, specialist community legal centre, providing free legal services primarily in the areas of family law and domestic violence. It has offices in Townsville and Cairns and has been operating since 1996. 

They are currently looking for an experienced Family Law Solicitor for the Cairns office.

The position offers an opportunity for an experienced Family Law Solicitor to make a real difference in the lives of women who need legal help with family law and domestic violence matters.

You will have the opportunity to work holistically and creatively with a great team in a family friendly environment. We strive to achieve a healthy work/life balance for all employees. Salary commensurate with experience, including salary sacrifice benefits.
Applications close: 19 September, 2016. For more information, please follow the link.

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