About the Project

On Monday 15 June 2020, Labor and the Greens joined forces to oppose a critical part of the Morrison Government’s legislation to protect children against paedophiles.

The Attorney-General made the case that last financial year 39% of federally-convicted child sex offenders spent no time behind bars. Zero days.

The Morrison Government’s case is that this is clear evidence of a broken judicial system that was delivering outcomes far below that of community expectations.

Not only is it clear that the status quo isn’t working, it is clear that mandatory minimums are. All across Australia we have mandatory minimum sentences to deter terrorism, people smuggling and violence against police and nurses.

After a Royal Commission and almost a decade of public awareness over the crimes of vile individuals against children, and systemic cover ups in the institutional responses, it should have been clear to them that community expectations are that justice must be served.

Labor and the Greens have let their ideological bent stand in between tougher sentences for the most heinous of crimes against the most vulnerable in our community.

Please sign this petition to call for mandatory minimum sentences for child sex offences to protect our children against paedophiles.

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Background to Legislation

The Crimes Legislation Amendment (Sexual Crimes against Children and Community Protection Measures) Bill 2019 introduced mandatory minimum sentences and toughened up sentencing, and is yet another example of the Morrison Government’s commitment to protect children in Australia and overseas from the dangers of sexual exploitation and abuse and to improve justice outcomes for survivors of child sex offences.

Sexual crimes against children destroy lives

The depraved individuals who prey on these most vulnerable members of our community for their own sexual gratification or financial gain, are too often handed short ja​il terms and are released into the community without any supervision, or worse still, without serving a single day in prison.

Meanwhile victims are left to face the resulting trauma for the rest of their lives.

Like many Australians, this Government is fed up with lenient sentencing practices that fail to protect the community from child sex offenders. This Bill will vastly improve justice outcomes and community safety through a range of measures:

  • mandatory minimum sentences for the most serious child sex offences and for repeat offenders
  • increased maximum penalties across the spectrum of child sex offences, including up to life imprisonment for the most serious offences
  • presumptions in favour of cumulative sentences and actual imprisonment
  • ensuring that all sex offenders, upon release from custody, are adequately supervised and subject to appropriate rehabilitative conditions
  • an overhaul of the sentencing factors for all federal offenders
  • preventing courts from discounting sentences on the basis of good character where this is used to facilitate the crime, and
  • emphasising the importance of access to rehabilitation and treatment when sentencing child sex offenders.
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