Monday, 12 March 2012

Defence Sexual Assault Scandals

The Australian Defence Forces are work places like any other and sexual assault and sexual harassment should be dealt with the same way.  Not releasing the outcome of the inquiry by Andrew Kirkham, QC, into the Skype sex scandal is understandable in that the matter is still before the courts.  However, for us to have confidence in the Australian Defence Force handling of such situations it is essential that they have transparent processes for dealing with such issues.
A number of years ago HMAS Cerberus put in place a system of people who could be approached about sexual assault matters outside of the hierarchical system which deals with all other issues. These people were offered some training and resourcing.  This is essential because if the assault is of a junior member by a senior member, who is their next in line, it is obviously not possible to approach them about this matter.

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