“The latest release of crime statistics by Victoria Police highlights the need for an independent agency to manage, collate and publish such information,” said Greens Justice spokesperson Sue Pennicuik today.
“On releasing the figures, Acting Chief Commissioner Lucinda Nolan said family violence reporting had driven up the overall crime rate for the past 18 months and that the increase in the crime rate was also due to more detected drug offences and other offences,” said Ms. Pennicuik. “But we don’t have an independent assessment of the statistics and what is driving the crime rate up.”
MS PENNICUIK — To ask the Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations (for the Minister for Corrections): In relation to young people under the age of 18 years in adult prisons:
(1) What is the number of young people under 18 years of age who are currently held in an adult prison, including the number in solitary confinement.
MS PENNICUIK — To ask the Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations (for the Minister for Police and Emergency Services): In light of media reports in January 2013:
(1) How many and what type of firearms have been imported into Victoria annually in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The main purpose of the bill is to introduce new definitions of injury and serious injury into the Crimes Act 1958, which will apply to the new gross violence offences introduced by the bill and to all other non-fatal offences against the person in the Crimes Act.
It will amend the Crimes Act and the Sentencing Act 1991 to introduce statutory minimum sentences of imprisonment for the two new indictable offences of intentionally or recklessly causing serious injury in circumstances of gross violence -- that being imprisonment for a non-parole period of at least four years.
“The proposed increases in VCAT fees and the ongoing crisis in legal aid funding is seriously jeopardising access to justice in this state,” said Greens Justice spokesperson Sue Pennicuik today.
“Recent reports that two criminal trials have been delayed must be of great concern to everyone.”
“A person’s right to a fair hearing is severely compromised when they do not have equal representation to the prosecution throughout the trial process.”
Ms PENNICUIK -- Also this week in the United Kingdom a skeleton, uncovered in Leicester last year, has been identified as that of King Richard III. This is an amazing historical and archaeological story. Controversially portrayed by the Tudors and Shakespeare as a villain, Richard III was a social reformer and legal innovator.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- It has all been happening in the UK this week. The House of Commons has voted 400 to 175 in favour of marriage equality after Prime Minister David Cameron allowed a conscience vote.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- I start my contribution by thanking the library for its excellent research brief on the Criminal Organisations Control Bill 2012, which was put out last month and is the 10th research brief the library has put out this year. It gives some background on what are called 'outlaw motorcycle clubs', on crime and on Victoria Police's Taskforce Echo.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The bills before us now, the Integrity and Accountability Legislation Amendment Bill 2012 and the Protected Disclosure Bill 2012, which we are debating together as they are very much intertwined and related to each other, have emerged after considerable silence following the previous bills that enacted part of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) and Victorian Inspectorate regimes.
Ms PENNICUIK (Southern Metropolitan) -- The Justice Legislation Amendment (Family Violence and Other Matters) Bill 2012 is an omnibus bill that amends six principal acts. The major amendments are to the Family Violence Protection Act 2008. The amendments insert new indictable offences in relation to contraventions of family violence safety notices and family violence intervention orders, and for repeated contravention of those notices and orders.