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Crimes Amendment (Strengthening the Criminal Justice Response to Sexual Violence) Bill 2024

Thumbnail - First page of the ALSWH submission to the 2024 crimes amendment bill

The Crimes Amendment (Strengthening the Criminal Justice Response to Sexual Violence) Bill 2024 is proposed to amend the Crimes Act 1914 to strengthen the protections afforded to victims and survivors of child sexual abuse and vulnerable individuals in Commonwealth criminal proceedings. The Centre for Women’s Health Research (CWHR) was invited by the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee to make a submission.

Using ALSWH findings, CWHR made a submission that focused on the experiences of vulnerable individuals engaging with the legal system, including women who have experienced sexual violence. Recommendations for the proposed changes to the Crimes Act 1914 relating to vulnerable persons were presented, along with recommendations to further improve women’s experiences navigating the legal system after experiences of violence.

Outcomes

In April 2024, the Senate released the Crimes Amendment (Strengthening the Criminal Justice Response to Sexual Violence) Bill 2024. The Bill referenced the CWHR submission and shared several qualitative experiences from Australian women. Qualitative comments touched upon the lived experience of sexual assault, interactions with the legal system, long-term impacts of trauma and the lack of support available for victims and their families.

Links

Go to web site Learn more about the inquiry on the Parliament of Australia website

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