News + Views

The CIJ advocates for a better justice system through a range of forums including media articles, opinion pieces, speeches and our blog. To request media comment, please contact RMIT Central Communications on +61 439 704 077.

Blog

Answering your questions about ‘Finding a job with a criminal record – what new spent convictions laws mean for you’

Our Law Week event, held on 17 May 2021, aimed to provide jobseekers, particularly Aboriginal people who have a criminal record, with information and guidance to present their strongest case for employment to an employer.

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Blog

Australia going backwards, not forwards, on raising the age of criminal responsibility

This week, the Centre for Innovative Justice joins 75 other organisations to call for action by all Australian states and territories to raise the age of criminal responsibility.

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Media

Open Circle’s Anna Howard on Done by Law

Anna discusses restorative justice services and shares the work of Open Circle.

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Media

Spent convictions scheme passes Victoria’s upper house

"It's been a long and emotional journey but with this new legislation I hope my mob and all Victorians won't have to face as many barriers as I have in the past," Wakka Wakka woman, Naomi Murphy.

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Blog

Meet me halfway

This piece is written by Dorothy Armstrong, CIJ Adviser & Peer Support Worker, on her experience in giving evidence to the Disability Royal Commission.

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News

Need for safe and supported processes for reaching protection orders by consent greater than ever before

The CIJ is thrilled to be able to release research it conducted to support implementation of Recommendation 77 of the Royal Commission into Family Violence – More than just a piece of paper. Getting protection orders made in a safe and supported way.

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Blog

Building a more ‘victim-led’ system means asking victims of crime what they want – Part Two

In this two-part series, we outline our findings from research conducted in 2019 which involved in-depth interviews with 37 victims of crime across Victoria to understand what they wanted and needed from the victim services system, and whether it was meeting their expectations. We encountered a diverse range of needs and circumstances, as well as surprising insights into how we can improve support for people who have experienced crime.

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Media

Cognitively impaired admitting to crimes they say they didn’t commit

No one told Dorothy Armstrong in her first ever police interview she was allowed a support person; someone to help understand the jargon, comfort her, encourage her description of who attacked her and how.

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News

New ANROWS project announced!

Building directly on the PIPA project, Elena Campbell and CIJ are leading the new ANROWS funded project 'WRAP around families experiencing adolescent violence in the home (AVITH)' to develop a framework for comprehensive support and earlier intervention.

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Students

Review of the Literature on Integrated Social Work and Legal Practice

In Semester 2 of 2020, Master of Social Work students, Anushia Andrews and Lauren Tarver, completed a project-based Field Education 2 placement at the Law and Advocacy Centre for Women researching integrated practice, with a particular focus on social work support in community legal settings.

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Media

How reducing women’s imprisonment can further fiscal recovery

Women’s incarceration rates have skyrocketed across Australia at great cost to disadvantaged Australians and the economy more broadly. As we move towards economic recovery, we must remember those for whom the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have been especially acute.

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News

Women Transforming Justice – Final Evaluation Report released!

December 2020 marks 10 years since the UN adopted the Bangkok Rules - recognition that women in contact with the criminal justice system require gender-specific, non-custodial responses. Our evaluation of the Women Transforming Justice project shows the value of gender specific approaches to addressing unacceptable rises in women's incarceration in Victoria. Look out for more in 2021 around this vital issue.

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Media

Criminal record reform to provide more opportunities for rehabilitation

After years of consultation, lobbying, research and engagement, Victoria is about to become the last state in Australia to have its own spent convictions’ legislation.

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Blog

Building a more ‘victim-led’ system means asking victims of crime what they want – Part One

In this two-part series, we share key findings from research conducted by the Centre for Innovative Justice in 2019, which involved in-depth interviews with 37 victims of crime across Victoria to understand what they wanted and needed from the victim services system, and whether it was meeting their expectations. We encountered a diverse range of needs and circumstances, as well as surprising insights into how we can improve support for people who have experienced crime.

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Students

Social Work and Juris Doctor student 2020 reflections

Despite ongoing COVID restrictions, placements for RMIT Social Work and Juris Doctor students have continued throughout 2020, albeit from home. Social work student, Anushia Andrews, recently completed her placement at the Law and Advocacy Centre for Women and Juris Doctor student, Katrina Harte, recently completed a placement at the Young Workers Centre. Read their reflections on the challenges they faced and the innovative ways of adapting to undertaking a remote placement.

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Blog

Behind closed doors – families experiencing adolescent violence must be remembered in the recovery effort

The use of family violence by children and young people has been a concern for some time. The Royal Commission into Family Violence dedicated specific recommendations to it, while growing research - including the PIPA project - points to the complexities across families experiencing this challenge.

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Blog

Spent Convictions Bill 2020 in Parliament

Victorian Attorney-General Jill Hennessey introduced the Spent Convictions Bill 2020 into the Victorian Parliament in October, and it is likely to be debated in the coming weeks. If passed, this legislation will bring Victoria in line with other Australian jurisdictions and will remove some of the obstacles to people’s successful rehabilitation.

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Blog

Restorative justice in forensic mental health settings – report by student Eliza Hew

Historically, people with serious mental illness have not been included in restorative justice practices, with exclusion hinging on the assumption that this population do not have the capacity to meaningfully participate. More recently however, literature suggests that this assumption is unsubstantiated (and discriminatory); there exist significant potential benefits for patients, staff, victims and the broader community.

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Students

Open Circle internship – my experience

This piece is written by Juris Doctor & Masters of Social Work student, Eliza Hew, about her experience undertaking an online internship at CIJ's Open Circle.

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Media

Uncle Michael “Mookeye” Bell shares his thoughts on Victoria’s Spent Convictions Bill

CIJ's Michael Bell talks with Connection Matters Radio about Victoria's new Spent Convictions Bill

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Media

Victoria introduces spent convictions bill to parliament

CIJ's Stan Winford talks with The Wire's Steven Riggall about Victoria's new Spent Convictions Bill

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Blog

Restorative justice can enhance the rights of people with a disability living in group homes

The justice system can on the one hand fail to recognise serious victimisation as criminal offending when experienced by people with disability, while being unable to imagine alternatives to the criminal justice system in responding to complexity.

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Students

Social Work students reflect on their remote placements at the MHLC

Despite ongoing COVID restrictions, social work field education placements have continued for many social work students in semester 2, 2020, albeit from home. The Mental Health Legal Centre (MHLC) is fortunate to have two Field Education 2 final year Master of Social Work students currently on placement. The students, Madeleine Grigg and Irene Dao, are completing a project-based placement researching integrated practice, with a particular focus on social work support in community legal settings. 

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News

SupportingJustice.net wins Gold in the Good Design Awards ‘Social Impact’ category!

This week we’re excited to confirm that the SupportingJustice.net online resource has been recognised with an Australian Good Design Gold Award in the social impact category.  

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