Welcome to the 7th edition of our newsletter

CIJ Far and Wide 

CIJ staff covered the length and breadth of the country over the past two months. Rob and Elena Campbell were in Adelaide to observe its specialist treatment intervention program in action and to attend a roundtable on their innovative problem gambling intervention program being piloted in an effort to break the cycle of compulsive gambling and offending.  The program enables offenders to address their gambling addiction and criminal behaviour through intensive therapy and holistic case management.   Insights gained will feed into a report commissioned by the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation looking at the intersection between problem gambling and the criminal justice system.  

In the evening Rob delivered a speech on The Poverty to Prison Pipeline at the invitation of the Centre for Crime Policy and Research, Flinders University.  A copy of the speech can be found here

The release of the disturbing footage from the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre served as the backdrop for a long planned trip to the Northern Territory for Rob who was invited by Charles Darwin University to deliver a keynote address on Empowering and Disempowering First Nations Peoples through Law and Policy (speech can be found here), and Making Justice Work to discuss law reform in the NT.  Over four busy but productive days in Darwin Rob and Stan Winford met with MJW, North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency, and a number of local members for far ranging discussions covering issues such as youth justice, Don Dale, specialist and therapeutic courts, mandatory sentencing and rehabilitation and reintegration.  
Making Justice Work at North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency
Meanwhile, over in Western Australia Kat Ogilvie was part of a panel discussion with Peninsula CLC, Barwon CLC and InTouch at the National CLC Conference discussing the benefits of integrated multidisciplinary work environments. This year’s theme was 'Innovation and Collaboration for better justice outcomes.'

Stop Press – Mapping Perpetrator Journeys Across the Service System 

The Centre for Innovative Justice has recently been commissioned to conduct a targeted piece of work which maps the journey of perpetrators of family violence across the spectrum of the service system and which can inform the development of the Victorian Government's 10 Year Plan to address family violence. This is in response to Recommendation 85 by the Royal Commission into Family Violence and draws on the CIJ’s previous research in this area.

Over the coming month, the CIJ will consult widely across different ‘sub-sectors’ which may present opportunities for more effective intervention with a wide diversity of perpetrators of family violence.

Given the tight timelines involved, this work will be a high level overview only and represent an initial step along a more considered path towards understanding safe and effective interventions. As part of this initial step the CIJ will be identifying a range of diverse contexts – such as interventions within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities; within Culturally and Linguistically Diverse communities; within the disability sector and so on – which need careful and nuanced approaches which cannot be adequately addressed within a short timeframe. As such, the CIJ hopes to work towards a second, more involved piece of work to support its initial overview, in 2017.

Multidisciplinary Responses to Family Violence Callouts 

After extensive work over the first half of 2016, the CIJ’s report to the Southern Melbourne Integrated Family Violence Partnership has now been endorsed and formally released which can be found here. Following detailed consultations with personnel from Partnership agencies; a scan of up to date literature and drawing on its previous report Opportunities for early intervention: bringing perpetrators of family violence into view, the CIJ’s report made recommendations for an inter-agency triaging and outreach response to families which featured within repeat police family violence callouts. 

These recommendations were specifically developed to respond to the strengths and challenges currently facing the Southern Melbourne region, including the pending changes as a result of the Royal Commission into Family Violence. In particular, this region – which incorporates the City of Greater Dandenong, the City of Casey and Cardinia Shire – has reported some of the highest rates of incidents of family violence in Victoria, while its population includes communities from over 150 cultural and linguistic backgrounds. A gap identified by the CIJ was the need to deliver a more effective response to women for whom – for cultural or other reasons – ‘leaving was not on the table’, as well as stronger responses to perpetrators and support for families experiencing violence from their adolescent or adult dependent children. The CIJ will be presenting its recommendations to high level representatives from Victoria Police, DHHS, DPC, DOJ and other government agencies over the coming months and hopes that this work will make a useful contribution to the dedicated and specialist work of the Partnership agencies.

Justice User Group participants launch first Advocacy Campaign 

In August the Minister for Housing, The Hon. Martin Foley MP launched the Justice User Group’s first self-advocacy campaign ‘Three Hots and a Cot'. The campaign features artwork produced by the Justice User Group participants and seeks to highlight the need for housing and support for people leaving prison – especially those with ABI. Many of the participants have experienced homelessness after leaving prison and they identify lack of access to housing as a significant barrier to staying out of prison. The campaign 'Three Hots and a Cot' refers to the bed and three hot meals that, for many, is easier to access by going to prison than remaining in the community
Rob Hulls, Justice User Group participant, Kerry and The Hon Martin Foley
JUG participants' artworks featured on promotional postcards 
RMIT JD students assess the impact of a 'Federal Human Rights Charter'

Five RMIT JD students are mid-way through their research project for the Australian Human Rights Commission. The students are assessing the impact of a hypothetical Federal Human Rights Charter on Australian cases and laws had it been place at the time they were determined/introduced.

The students have been based at the CIJ one day a week and have received expert guidance from David Manne (Refugee Legal) and Emily Howie (Human Rights Law Centre) throughout the semester. The students will present their research to the Commission in early 2017.


ARC Taster Placements 

During August and September, eight RMIT JD students have had a rare opportunity to shadow one of four Magistrates who sit on the Assessment and Referral Court List at the Melbourne Magistrates Court. For most, this was the first time that they had observed solution-focused justice in action, and all were inspired by what they observed. Student Amy Nolan who, along with Max Lavery, shadowed Magistrate Ann Collins, has reflected upon her experience on the CIJ blog.
Thank you to Ms Ann Collins, Ms Anne Goldsbrough, Mr John Hardy, Mr Lance Martin and Registrar Kathryn Gutbier who engaged and encouraged the students during their placements.
The CIJ will announce more opportunities for students over the coming months, so stay tuned!
Amy Nolan and Max Lavery outside the Magistrate's Court

Career Mentor Forum 

The Centre will host the 2016 Career Mentor Forum for RMIT JD students on 13 October and this year we have extended the invitation to Legal and Dispute Studies, Justice and Criminology and Social Work students.   Students will have an opportunity to hear from, and speed date with, some inspirational mentors, including:

John Cain, Victoria’s Solicitor for Public Prosecutions, Office of Public Prosecutions
Liberty Sanger, Principal, Maurice Blackburn
Carolyn Burnside, Barrister at Law
Ruth Barson, Director of Advocacy, Human Rights Law Centre
Elissa Scott, Summary Crime Program Manager, Victoria Legal Aid
Demetrio Zema, Director, Law Squared

The forum is currently fully subscribed, however students may email to join a waiting list.
In Conversation with the Victorian Ombudsman

Those who attended our Prisons: Unlocking our Thinking forum in February this year would know what an engaging and fearless speaker Deborah Glass is.  We have invited Deborah to join us again for an informal ‘in conversation’ to talk about a range of issues including her varied and interesting career and her report Investigation into public transport fare evasion enforcement (Myki).  

Details of the event are:
DATE  Mon 17 October 2016
TIME 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
LOCATION RMIT University - Swanston Academic Building - Level 4, Room 6,
445 Swanston St
Melbourne, Victoria

Register to attend here

CIJ in the media

CIJ Out and About

Coming up are the following CIJ speaking engagements:

13 Oct – Career Mentor Forum
17 Oct – Ombudsman Forum, Deborah Glass – RMIT Melbourne City Campus
18 Oct – Problem Gambling Conference, Focus: interim report by CIJ – Speaker: Rob Hulls and Elena Campbell
26 Oct – Springvale Monash Legal Centre, AGM – Speaker: Rob Hulls
02 Nov – Victorian Women Lawyers, re Royal Commission into Family Violence follow up – Speaker: Rob Hulls
4-5 Nov – Clarity Conference, Listenability and the law – Wellington, NZ – Speaker: Rob Hulls
17 Nov – VACRO AGM Innovation in the Sector – Speaker: Rob Hulls
29 Nov – Legal Studies Teacher’s Conference, re Justice Index - Victoria University City Campus – Speaker: Rob Hulls

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