Welcome to AWAVA’s weekly round-up of news. This week, the New South Wales and Western Australian governments have both made advances in legislation to criminalise the non-consensual sharing of intimate material and cyberbullying. AWAVA supports efforts to criminalise these acts, in light of the serious and lasting harm they cause to women and girls. Jennifer Snell, a Perth woman whose former husband drugged and photographed her, said, “To me, revenge porn doesn’t feel like the right word. Porn implies that it’s something you’re doing for somebody’s entertainment. This is something that comes out of an abusive relationship — it’s more like technology-facilitated abuse.” Earlier this year AWAVA made a submission to a Senate Inquiry arguing that the best protection for victims/survivors in the Australian context will be provided by a specific-purpose Commonwealth law mirrored by consistent and uniform States and Territory laws.
Around the Country
- In Victoria, Deakin and La Trobe universities will extend domestic violence leave to cover all staff including those on casual employment.
- In Queensland, this week has marked the first year anniversary of Karina Lock’s public murder on the Gold Coast, which shocked the community and sparked an escalation in demand for support services.
- Also in Queensland, the Department of Justice and Attorney General have questioned the validity of a survivor’s claim of domestic violence during her application for compensation.
Around the World
- In Geneva, United Nations Special Rapporteur Dubravka Šimonović is scheduled for an 11 day visit to the Occupied Palestinian Territory in Israel to assess programs on violence against women and girls.
- In the United States, the House of Representative has passed the Sexual Assault Survivor’s Bill of Rights Act, a benchmark of best practices in responding to cases of sexual assaults.
- In England and Wales, police forces have investigated a high number of misogyny cases in July and August prompting them to consider defining such cases as hate crimes.
- In France, United Against, a not-for-profit organisation which aims at preventing harassment and discrimination through organising cultural events has announced the grand prize winner in the international video contest against harassment and bullying. The winning video titled Le dernier mercredi (The Last Wednesday) which was directed by Lucie Baudrillart tackled the serious issue of teenage suicide caused by bullying. View the film here.
- In Nigeria, Enugu State Deputy Governor, Celicila Ezeilo, has identified political violence as one of the major barriers to women’s participation in politics. Other hindrances include cultural barriers, gender discrimination, gender based violence and lack of financial capacity.
- In Canada, women and children fleeing domestic violence in Ontario can now terminate residential leases faster and without penalty.
- In East Africa, the Commonwealth Secretariat has launched the first Judicial Bench Book, a compilation of best practices in the region that would serve as a basis for the introduction of legal reforms.
Research and reports
- A new study, Additional Layers of Violence: The Intersections of Gender and Disability in the Violence Experiences of Women with Physical Disabilities in South Africa, has been released online.
- Delegates are preparing to gather in Adelaide for Prevalent & Preventable, an international conference dedicated to the prevention of violence against women and their children, co-hosted by AWAVA and Our Watch (19-22 September). Follow the live updates on Twitter at #PPVAW2016 and watch out for the conference report in October.
- Save the date: WESNET is pleased to announce it will be hosting the Inaugural Technology Safety Summit in Sydney on 21 November 2016. This one-day conference will focus on the various complex issues and concerns that come from the intersection of technology and domestic and sexual violence, and stalking. The Tech Summit will bring together those working with women and their children experiencing violence and other stakeholders from government and corporate Australia. Attendees of the Tech Summit will learn how technology can be misused as a tactic of abuse, how women experiencing gender-based violence can use technology to improve their safety and privacy, how digital evidence can be collected to hold perpetrators accountable, and how agencies can strengthen policies and practices to improve service delivery, and what other support technology and telecommunications companies can provide. To find out more, register your interest here!
- The Adelaide White Ribbon Breakfast will be held on 25 November at the Adelaide Convention Centre from 6:45 am to 9:00 am. The guest speaker will be the honourable Marcia Neave, chair of the recent Victorian Royal Commission into Family Violence. Book here.
- The School of Sciences and Psychology of Western Sydney University is holding a Symposium on Older Women and Violence: Innovative Policies, Programs and Practices, Wednesday 21st September 2016 at Western Sydney University, from 9am to 4pm. Register here.
- Lucy’s Project is hosting the second annual conference on Domestic Violence and Animal Abuse-International Perspective to be held from 5-6 November at the Portside Conference Centre, level 5 Symantec House, 207 Kent St., Sydney. Book here.
- The Australian Women’s Health Network is asking for supporters to make some noise and save women’s health! Join the campaign here.
- Women’s Legal Service Victoria is holding an interactive workshop on Children and the Law on 15 September at Level 50 Bourke Place, 600 Bourke St, Melbourne. Click here to book.
- The University of Melbourne has created a website called ‘NotTheOnlyOne’ where women can anonymously read and share stories about experiencing family and domestic violence.
- The National Multicultural Women’s Conference will be held on 3 and 4 November 2016 in Parkroyal Parramatta, Sydney. Find out more here.
- 1800RESPECT, the National Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Counselling Service is holding a webinar to give front-line workers an understanding of technology facilitated abuse and knowledge on how to support women with practical advice and tools to increase their safety when using digital technology and online media. The 45 minute webinar will be held on 15 September from 1pm AEST. The presenter is Karen Bentley, National Director SafetyNet Australia, WESNET. Register here.
- Soroptomist International Australia is sponsoring the Rosie Batty Roadshow from 5 October to 7 November 2016, travelling from Brisbane to Sydney, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne and Adelaide. Proceeds will go to the Women’s Legal Services in each capital that Rosie will visit. To buy your tickets click here.