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DownUnderAllOver

DownUnderAllOver

Developments around the country

DownUnderAllOver is a round-up of legal news from both State and federal jurisdictions, and contains topical articles and short pieces from Alternative Law Journal committees around the country.

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Victim Services: Age Should Be No Barrier

Catherine Schubert
South Australia

Young people aged between 14 and 24 years are heavily represented in Australian crime victimisation statistics, for crimes against the person. Nevertheless, victim agencies are typically designed primarily to assist adults. This means there is a lack of services that are both available and accessible for young victims of crime. While each jurisdiction is grappling with this issue, in South Australia it has formally been flagged by Victim Support Service (‘VSS’). This organisation is currently equipped to assist victims over the age of 16.

(2011) 36(3) AltLJ 210

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Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Lecture

Noelle Rattray
Tasmania

The Hon Michael Kirby, AC CMG, delivered the inaugural Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Lecture — My Journey with Social Justice — on Monday 2 May. The lecture also officially launched the Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Fund.* In June 2010, Tasmanian lawyer and Principal Solicitor at the Tenant’s Union Alexander (Sandy) Duncanson died at the age of 37 after surviving cancer for sixteen years. He was widely respected for his work in the community legal and housing sectors.

(2011) 36(3) AltLJ 211

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Criminal sentencing

Lizzie O'Shea
Victoria

Last month, the Victorian Liberal government launched an online survey about criminal sentencing through the Department of Justice. It is designed to gauge public opinion about the current approach to sentencing for a range of crimes.

(2011) 36(3) AltLJ 211

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Mandatory sentencing for gross violence?

Tom Kelly
Victoria

Attorney-General Robert Clark has asked the Sentencing Advisory Council to provide advice on a plan to introduce mandatory sentencing for intentionally or recklessly causing serious injury in circumstances of gross violence.

The plans include four year minimum sentences for adults and two year minimum sentences for 16- and 17-year-old juveniles.
(2011) 36(3) AltLJ 212

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Defensive homicide benefits family violence victims

Jake Collom
Victoria

In 2005 defensive homicide was added to the Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) as an alternative verdict to murder. This new offence was intended to be applied predominantly in cases of family violence motivated killing where the accused believed, unreasonably, that the killing was necessary in self defence.

(2011) 36(3) AltLJ 212

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