In her recorded presentation, Angela Lynch, CEO Sexual Assault Services Qld reminds us that October is Sexual Violence (#SV) Awareness Month. Reports of SV have increased in Qld over the past decade nevertheless, the reporting of SV to police and/or authorities remains low, and the conviction rates are even lower – the lowest of all crimes at less than 5%.
Angela Lynch spoke about what change survivors want to see. They want to be heard, believed and treated by professionals with trauma informed practices. They want access to counselling, advocacy and financial support.
The legal system rarely provides any of these basic rights to the victim/survivors of SV. For those who do choose to go through the legal process, it is gruelling, re-traumatising, puts the victim and not the alleged offender on trial, as in the case of Brittney Higgens splashed all over the newspaper in recent times. This MUST change.
In this presentation Angela Lynch reassures us that the ‘tide is turning’, slowly, partly thanks to the advocacy of courageous survivors like Grace Tames. Angela has hope for the future, so long as any practice reforms in policing and NGO responses are victim-centric and include survivors in the co-design of changes that might enhance their experiences of the justice system.
This speech was recorded at the Enhancing policing and integrated responses to domestic and sexual violence workshop, co-hosted by Kerry Carrington and the University of the Sunshine Coast 21 October 2022. You can listen to it by clicking the link below.