The truth about giving birth in jail, and what comes next.

Nowadays, giving birth in prison is a very different experience. Every state and territory has legislation in place to accommodate babies behind bars – although there are limited spaces.

In South Australia, children are allowed to stay until they’re three, but in New South Wales they can stay until they turn six.

The children don’t stay in a cell, they live on prison grounds in a little cottage or unit-type set up with their mum. It looks domestic, not custodial – but the doors are locked.

Pregnant women behind bars still get all the prenatal care they would on the outside, and when it’s time to give birth they are taken to hospital. They are returned to prison with their baby, if the child is well enough to come with them.

As a mum who has been there, Kerry wants us on the outside to remember, it’s not women in prison saying “bring us our kids – we have a right to see them.”

She says the philosophy is more “it’s the right of our children to see their mother.”

Source: The truth about giving birth in jail, and what comes next.

‘Gut-wrenching’: Queensland police try to block compensation for domestic violence victim

The Queensland police service has launched another attempt to block compensation to a domestic violence victim, who was forced into hiding after her details were accessed by a senior constable and leaked to her abusive former partner.

Julie* won a landmark breach of privacy case against the police in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) last month. The ruling would have entitled Julie to compensation, including for the cost of having to relocate her family, capped at $100,000.

On Friday, the state government’s legal office, Crown Law, filed an appeal against the tribunal decision, likely dragging the case through another complex hearing.

The government briefed a barrister for a hearing last year. Julie represented herself. Throughout, she has had to endure a court battle that legal experts say ran contrary to the state’s responsibility to act as a “model litigant”.

Three times during the case, Crown Law missed filing deadlines and sent submissions after they were due. The application to appeal was also submitted after the 28-day deadline.

In a judgment on 27 March, a QCAT member, Susan Gardiner, found police had breached two of the the state’s information privacy principles.

Throughout the case, police have not disputed that Julie’s privacy was breached. Instead they claimed police were not responsible for that breach.

Crown Law claims, in the application to appeal, that the tribunal erred on several grounds, including by taking into account that Julie was a domestic violence victim.

Source: ‘Gut-wrenching’: Queensland police try to block compensation for domestic violence victim | Australia news | The Guardian

It is time to shatter a few supposed truths about out-of-home care | Kirsten Gray for IndigenousX

We continue to hear that Indigenous children are being removed from their parents in astronomical numbers, much greater than at the time of the Bringing them Home report was released in 1997. During 2017-18, Indigenous children were 11 times more likely than non-Indigenous children to be in out-of-home care and eight times as likely to be receiving child protection services. This has got to stop.

Many people are able to justify the numbers of Indigenous children removed from their families because they tell themselves that children are being kept out of harm’s way. But I would argue that this is not always the case. It is easier to believe that the root cause of these issues lay with us, rather than in the ongoing impact of trauma that we have endured and that has been inflicted upon us. It is easier to think that, for many of us, entering this system of “care” guarantees us a life of safety and stability. It is time to shatter a few of these supposed truths.

Source: It is time to shatter a few supposed truths about out-of-home care | Kirsten Gray for IndigenousX | Opinion | The Guardian

Is Sex by Deception a Form of Rape?

Laws are seeking to elucidate the problem of “rape by fraud.”

Ms. Short, 70, wants a universal law stating that consent is “freely given, knowledgeable, and informed agreement.” This may sound obvious, but it’s actually not, because there’s no universal definition of consent in the United States. Each state defines it differently, if it defines it at all.

“Most people think all types of agreement are consent,” said Ms. Short, who has written three books and done a TedX Talk on the subject. “They’re not.” While Ms. Short does not equate trickery to obtain sex with violent rape, she does believe it should be a Class D or E felony, with jail sentences of one to four years and a fine of $10,000.

Ms. Short says there is a clear distinction between consent and assent. “Consent means ‘freely given, knowledgeable and informed agreement.’ Assent means ‘agreement on the face of it.’ So, when someone tells you a lie, you can be agreeing on the face of it but you’re not knowledgeable or informed. You can assent and agree, but that doesn’t mean you’re consenting.”

Some worry that legislating deception is a slippery slope, because where do you draw the line? Is it deception if a woman dates two men concurrently and they don’t know about each other? Or what if you inject Botox into your crow’s feet and say you are younger than you are, or say “I love you” in order to have sex, but don’t mean it? In 2014, a sexual assault by fraud bill was introduced in New Jersey after a woman was impregnated by a man who falsely claimed to be a British spy. The bill went nowhere.

Ms. Short is hopeful that the bill will pass. “No one should be tricked, deceived, coerced, violently overwhelmed, drugged or intoxicated into sexual conduct,” she said. “Everyone has the right to determine who they engage with sexually based on both knowledge of the action and clear and informed knowledge of the actor.”

Source: Is Sex by Deception a Form of Rape? – The New York Times

Space International | Open invitation to the Director of Amnesty International UK to ‘Women of Colour Against the Sex Trade’ event

We, the undersigned, are Women of Colour from Britain, the United States, Canada, South Africa, Holland and Australia. We are visiting London in February to take part in the ‘Women of Colour Against the Sex Trade’ event due to take place there on Thursday, February 21st.

We write to you to invite you to come and hear us speak, as we will be discussing the harm and damage done to our communities by the global sex trade. It is hoped that by hearing us you will rethink Amnesty’s policy of 2015, which endorses the “all aspects” of the sex trade and urges governments worldwide to adopt laws and policies that endorse the full decriminalization of the sex trade, including pimps, brothel owners and buyers of sexual access, predominantly to female bodies.

Read more: Space International | Open invitation to the Director of Amnesty International UK to ‘Women of Colour Against the Sex Trade’ event

INTERVIEW: Women of colour speak out against prostitution

Domestic violence victim forced on to ParentsNext welfare program in ‘horrifying’ case

In a case one policy expert described as “horrifying”, the woman then had her welfare payments suspended because she could not meet her “mutual obligations” while dealing with court, the police, her injuries and caring for her three children, the youngest of whom is two.

There is no requirement for a provider to inform participants they are entitled to a reprieve from their obligations while they deal with a personal crisis.

And they have little incentive to do so, critics say, because they do not receive the service fee when a participant is exempt.

Source: Domestic violence victim forced on to ParentsNext welfare program in ‘horrifying’ case | Australia news | The Guardian

16 year old Selina Soule Speaks Up: Connecticut State Championships and the Equality Act

“Selina Soule explains that Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood have an unfair advantage—She’s speaking for girls who are ‘afraid to speak up because of retaliation from the media, school officials, and coaches.’ “

Source: 16 year old Selina Soule Speaks Up: Connecticut State Championships and the Equality Act – The Velvet Chronicle

More female teachers report upskirting, says union

The NASUWT union also says it was aware of cases of upskirting – where pictures are taken without permission under a skirt – involving pupils aged 14, with “some as young as 11”.

The union says head teachers should consider banning mobile phones in school and filling in open stairwells to protect both staff and pupils.

Source: More female teachers report upskirting, says union – BBC News

‘I lost consciousness’: woman whipped by the Taliban over burqa without veil

Aziza’s story reflects the growing number of violent public assaults on women deemed to be in breach of sharia law in Afghanistan

Source: ‘I lost consciousness’: woman whipped by the Taliban over burqa without veil | Haroon Janjua | Global development | The Guardian