Topic

justice reform

6 petitions

Started 9 months ago

Petition to Daniel Andrews

Enact Second Appeal System in Victoria

The human rights commission of Australia has stated that the criminal appeal system as it currently stands in Victoria is in breach of Australia's international human rights obligations - it does not guarantee the right to a fair trial or the right to an effective appeal. That is clearly unacceptable. Excluding South Australia and Tasmania every other state in Australia once you have exhausted all appeals, your only hope of ever getting let out of jail is via a Petition of Mercy to the Attorney General of the state you reside in. And even then the AG doesn't have to look at any new evidence... even if you have got the evidence that shows that the person is innocent.   In Victoria we only have a one appeal process. Most people don't realize the appeal process in this state is based on ONLY what you submit in your first trial, unless you have absolute FRESH evidence, so when you do have new evidence, its too bad you need to stay there and do your time, regardless if you are possibly innocent.   The solution is simple enact a law for a secondary appeal in this state.  Everyone is entitled to a fair and just hearing, and why are Victorians being treated as second class citizens - why is it that Tasmanian's and South Australians get that right to a second appeal but we don't in Victoria. Are we not all Australians?? Perhaps it is the worry of the politicians that if they pass this bill that every 'criminal' will want to submit new evidence... well let them.. the rules still apply... the evidence presented must still pass the rules of law for admissibility.  And why is it that the Attorney General gets to decide a persons fate with no legal guiding principle in play, and needs to give no reason and is done so behind closed doors? I can speak from personal experience. In 2016, my husband, a father of two was jailed for over 10 years for a fatal car accident in the state of Victoria, Australia. At the trial, police admitted the precise location of collision could not be determined, yet he was charged based on the theory that he had hit the other car from behind. That was the first of many flaws and distortions to be uncovered. Despite the evidence (or lack there off), my husband was convicted and jailed, leaving me (his wife) of 12 years to carry on as, effectively, a single mother. My story of unearthing the truth of what really happened on that day as well as the subsequent events that continue to arise since his incarceration showcase a negligent investigation, incompetence of counsel and all the associated elements of a miscarriage of justice.  But given I have this evidence and because we have exhausted our one appeal and high court appeal, the truth is to remain buried. I have detailed this all on www.hmprisonwife.com  Its time Victoria stands up and takes note of its inconsistencies within its own judicial system. EVERYONE  in Australia regardless of past, present actions, race, culture or identity should be able to have a fair and equal go in this country. This step in signing this petition is a first step in the direction of fairness for all.  I urge you to sign this petition because what happened to us could happen to any body.  Your life can change in a blink of an eye. It took a tragedy for me to open my eyes to see a grander problem before all of us... that affects all of us, but is un-known to everyone. Its time to speak up Victoria.... its time to fight for our rights!  Sign this petition and find out more and keep up to date at https://www.miscarriageofjusticeorganisation.com.au 

Nicole George
84 supporters
Started 2 years ago

Petition to Honourable John Quigley MLA. Attorney General of Western Australia

End imprisonment of vulnerable Western Australians for unpaid fines this Christmas!

Our families need to be home for Christmas.End imprisonment of vulnerable fine defaulters in Western Australia.  On average, 10 people are locked up every day in Western Australia, for not paying fines, and non-payment is usually due to circumstances of poverty. In WA, there have been many instances of women calling police for assistance during a domestic or family violence situation, who have then been removed from the homes and imprisoned due to fine default. These women often have children, act as primary caregivers, and were the victims of violence. In the case of Ms Dhu in 2014, her call to police for her partner breaching a domestic violence order, ultimately resulted in her own death in custody. This is not an isolated incident. Aboriginal people are among some of the most likely groups in Australia to live in circumstances of poverty, and although they represent 2.5% of the population, they are overrepresented in prison due to fine default – of all women jailed for fine default, 64% of them are Aboriginal. Western Australia is the only state that automatically imprisons people for defaulting on fines. While fines can be worked off in prison concurrently, if a person is to serve a community corrections order, they must work the fine off cumulatively. The current system incentivises prison, for people forced into a vulnerable situation. For every day a person is incarcerated they write off $250 worth of unpaid fines, however this costs taxpayers $345 per day, and over $700 a day for the first week, and using this method, the fine amount is never recouped.WA spent $42 million on imprisoning these non violent offenders from 2006 to 2014, a practice which also tears apart families, and disrupts communities.There are alternatives.Penalties such as Community Work Order Sentences cost just $43 a day, which allow people to take on Community Service work, saving money and keeping families together.New South Wales introduced a Work and Development Order scheme for vulnerable and disadvantaged fine defaulters, whereby fines can be cut out by undertaking activities such as health treatment, counselling, life skills development etc. This means people who do not have the financial means or capacity to pay fines, can work off their fines at the same time as ensuring in the future they have a greater capacity to avoid infringements and give back to their communities. This scheme has been successful, and due to this been adopted and adapted for Queensland and Victoria by their respective governments. Social Reinvestment WA is calling for the WA Parliament to act before Christmas 2017 to: Mandate alternative options to imprisonment for fine defaulters to reduce incarceration rates.  Implement a work and development order scheme for vulnerable and disadvantaged persons (as currently used in New South Wales, Victoria, and Queensland.) Allow community work sentences to cancel unpaid fines concurrently rather than consecutively, in line with the current system for prison sentences. (See 2008 amendments to the Fines Penalties and Infringement Notices Enforcement Act 1994 WA.) We need to end imprisonment of fine defaulters, and bring this state in line with the rest of the country.Find out more:www.socialreinvestmentwa.org.auFacebook: Social Reinvestment WA

Social Reinvestment WA
1,195 supporters
Started 2 years ago

Petition to Senator George Brandis, Gordon Ramsay MLA, The Hon. Mark Speakman SC MP, The Hon. Natasha Fyles, The Hon. Yvette D'Ath, Deputy Premier John Rau SC, Premier Will Hodgman MP, The Hon. Martin Pakula MP, The Hon. John Quigley MLA

CALL TO REVIEW DEFAMATION LAW IN AUSTRALIA

PROTECT OUR DEMOCRATIC RIGHTS TO FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND OPINION Are you aware that everything you publish on social media or even by private message to third parties, or even around the happy hour group in a caravan park is considered lies if it is something negative about a business or person? How does it make you feel that in the Australian defamation laws falsity is presumed (i.e. you are telling lies) and you have to prove that you are telling the truth or that it is your honest opinion in the public interest. In defamation laws, you are presumed to be a liar until you prove you are not. Most of the other laws have you innocent until proven guilty. How is that fair in a democracy? How does that make you feel from a moral and ethical standpoint and as a citizen in a democracy? This law impugns your integrity as a honest person. Businesses and individuals are using defamation laws as weapons of silence and bullying. If you post an honest review of a business, you can be threatened with defamation action if you don't remove it. If you remove it, the bully wins and consumers are none the wiser about the poor quality of the business's product or services. If you don't remove it then they file a writ for defamation, which costs less than $1000 in most jurisdictions, and now you are faced with getting a lawyer and potential costs of tens of thousands of dollars even if you win. Courts rarely award full costs. The reason this happens is because of the reverse burden of proof. If they had to prove you are lying, they would be reluctant to do so unless they were absolutely sure, because it is likely they know you are telling the truth. They would have had other complaints that they similarly silenced.  The current defamation laws were last amended in 2005, well before explosion of social media and review web sites. They a no longer relevant in the current age of mass publishing. They need urgent review.I want to make the clear point though that this is not in any way a suggestion that cyber bullying should be freely allowed. Those laws also need to be strengthened urgently. This argument is about stopping illegitimate means of silencing by using the law as a weapon, mostly of consumers. There also needs to be a low cost pre trial conference where a judge will ascertain if the defamation litigation is vexatious. Right now to do that the defendant needs to issue a summons and risk more costs if it fails.I know all this because I am defending myself against what I believe to be vexatious litigation by the manufacturer company director of my lemon caravan. I posted the truth and my honest opinion in the public interest. The stress has been debilitating. The financial cost is excessive. As a disability pensioner I have no means to defend myself except for crowd funding.Now I have received another threat from another business. I have evidence that everything posted is the truth. I have asked them for evidence that it is false and they refuse to supply it. Why? Because they don't have to. They can lie themselves, threaten defamation and force me to defend myself and my group.IT IS WRONG. IT IS BULLYING. IT HAS TO STOP. NOW.

Tracy Leigh
478 supporters
Started 3 years ago

Petition to Christian Porter, Malcolm Turnbull, Malcolm Turnbull, Christian Porter

State care requires accountability and sanctions to curb abuse and neglect.

This petition has been started as the result of MANY stories that have come to the attention of the Child Protection Party about CHILDREN in STATE CARE who have been ABUSED and NEGLECTED. This petition was further fueled by the Four Corners ABC program which aired on national TV on Monday 25 July which showed the horrendous ABUSE of youth offenders in a NT Youth Detention Centre. This event was a PUBLIC and SHOCKING EXAMPLE of what young people can face, in a variety of fashions, when they are entered in a SYSTEM that is MEANT to PROTECT them. The Child Protection Party believe and demand that our children and young people in the care of the State should be PROTECTED, not ABUSED and NEGLECTED further. Not cast aside. Those who ABUSE and NEGLECT children in care need to be made LEGALLY RESPONSIBLE for their actions - in other words, they are culpable and they should face criminal charges. Our children  are our future and we, as a nation, must do all we can to PROTECT our future. Ignoring the ABUSE and NEGLECT of our children is ignoring our future. Ignoring the ABUSE and NEGLECT of our children is telling them that we DON'T CARE about them, their future or the country’s future. We are telling them that they don’t matter. THIS MUST STOP! We refer this to The Hon. Malcom Turnbull and The Hon. Christian Porter because we believe this is NOT a STATE ISSUE. It is a NATIONAL DISGRACE. We believe that, acting in consultation with experts and members of the community, the Federal government is the body best suited to ensure not only JUSTICE and ACCOUNTABILITY for transgressions against children in STATE CARE but also to change the culture that has developed in the field of state care across the nation. http://mobile.abc.net.au/news/2016-07-25/young-boy-victimised-in-youth-detention-in-northern-territory/7657708 

Child Protection Party
935 supporters