Violence against people with disabilities
This is not an exhaustive list of research in the area of family violence and sexual assault, merely a starting point. As the locations of web pages often change, many of these reports have been made available through this page to assist readers. Please note that these pdfs may not contain the latest version or any recent changes so it is recommended that researchers check the author's website for updates, supplements or amendments.
Family Violence - A National Legal Response
Australian Law Reform Commission. 2010
The 2009 report of the National Council to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children, Time for Action, acknowledged the complex interaction between State and Territory family/domestic violence and child protection laws and the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth). The National Council also stressed the importance of consistent interpretation and application of laws relating to family/domestic violence and sexual assault, including rules of evidence, in ensuring justice for victims of such violence.
At its meeting of 16-17 April 2009, the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General agreed that Australian law reform commissions should work together to consider these issues.
This Report contains 187 recommendations for reform spread across eight parts.
Sexual Violence Against Intellectually Disabled Victims
Susan Hayes. Australian Institute of Criminology. 2009
There is evidence anecdotal, legal and empirical which demonstrates that intellectually disabled people in institutions were often victims of sexual assault from other residents, or from staff members.
Building the Evidence: Responding to violence against women with disabilities
Lucy Healey, Keran Howe, Cathy Humphreys, Chris Jennings, Felicity Julian. Victorian Women with Disabilities Network Advocacy Information Service. 2008
A report on the status of policy and practice in responding to violence against women with disabilities in Victoria. The key finding from this research is that there are major gaps in knowledge, policy and processes that will require significant resourcing in order to improve services to women with disabilities.
Sexual assault and adults with a disability: Enabling recognition, disclosure and a just response
Suellen Murray, Anastasia Powell. Australian Institute of Family Studies. 2008
Adults with a disability can face particular barriers to disclosure of sexual assault and
the responses to those who disclose are often inadequate. Enabling disclosure and
providing the most appropriate responses across public policy, the criminal justice
system and the service sector require further and urgent attention. This issues paper,
drawing on international literature as well as consultations with staff of a number
of Australian programs, provides clear directions for future research and practice in
responding to and preventing sexual assault among adults with a disability.
Study of Reported Rapes in Victoria 2000-2003
Melanie Heenan, Suellen Murray. The Office of Women’s Policy, Department for Victorian Communities. 2006
This study is the first extensive analysis of police investigations into rape offences in Victoria in more than a decade. It analysed 850 rapes reported to Victoria Police over three years, from 2000 to 2003, using the Victoria Police Law Enforcement Assistance Program (LEAP) database. It examined rape investigations and the factors that appeared to influence the outcomes, especially where the complaint was withdrawn or the investigation did not proceed.
Triple Disadvantage - Out of Sight, Out of Mind: Violence Against Women with Disabilities Project
Violence Against Women with Disabilities Project. State of Victoria Department of Human Services. 2003
The primary focus of this project was to create partnerships between disability services and services for women experiencing violence, in order to better address the needs of women with disabilities who are marginalised by the service system. Improving access to inclusive support is the ultimate goal.