Research + Projects

Swift, Certain and Fair Sentencing of family violence offenders

The CIJ has provided a submission to the Sentencing Advisory Council’s (SAC) review into Swift, Certain and Fair Sentencing of family violence offenders.

This review responds to the recommendation of the Royal Commission into Family Violence that the Attorney-General refer the question of Swift, Certain and Fair (SCF) sentencing approaches to the SAC for consideration in the Victorian context.

SCF approaches can be understood or conceptualised in various ways. As the SAC has described these approaches in its Discussion Paper, the term ‘SCF’ applies to very specific compliance based court models used primarily in US jurisdictions to respond to drug and alcohol offending. Understandably, the SAC queries the capacity to transfer models that have been created for use in other jurisdictions to the Victorian criminal justice context, particularly to family violence offenders, rather than drug or alcohol offenders.

In its submission, however, the CIJ encouraged the SAC to work backwards in its consideration – starting first with a detailed examination of the nature and variation of family violence perpetration; the fluctuating nature of risk; and then consider the evidence which indicates that prompt, clear and consistent consequences are the most effective response that a justice system can deliver.

Key People

Elena Campbell

Elena Campbell

Associate Director of Research, Advocacy & Policy

Elena is a lawyer, speechwriter and former political staffer who has worked in legal and social policy for nearly 20 years. Elena’s expertise includes therapeutic justice, equal opportunity and human rights, as well as the prevention and elimination of violence against women.

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Stan Winford

Stan Winford

Associate Director of Research, Innovation & Reform

Stan is a legal and justice system expert with experience in innovation and reform, including user centred design and applications for restorative and therapeutic justice in criminal and civil law.

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