- We have updated our sentencing publications to reflect new community-based sentencing options
The Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Amendment (Sentencing Options) Act 2017) commenced 24 September 2018. This Act introduced new community-based sentencing options. The Commission has updated relevant bench books and published an article in the Judicial Officers’ Bulletin to explain these changes.
The statistics viewer on JIRS has been changed to accommodate the new community-based sentencing options. On accessing the statistics, users will be directed to sentencing information for sentences imposed from 24 September 2018. These will only display the penalty options available from that date. It will be necessary to separately access the sentencing statistics for sentences imposed before 24 September 2018 and a link will be available from the statistics pages to access those statistics. Additional features will also be available. These include: the ability to filter statistics by case characteristic at a click; improved access to the legislation and maximum penalties; and better printing and email functions.
The Local Court statistics will be available from 18 July 2019. Statistics for the Supreme and District Courts should be available by early August.
- We have updated our publications to reflect child sexual assault reforms
The Criminal Legislation Amendment (Child Sexual Abuse) Act 2018, which commenced on 31 August 2018 and 1 December 2018, introduced new sexual assault offences and changes affecting sentencing for historical child sexual assault offences. The Commission has updated relevant bench books and published an article in the Judicial Officers’ Bulletin to explain these changes.
- Integrated criminal case system database for Papua New Guinea’s justice sector
The Judicial Commission has developed an integrated criminal case system database (ICCSD) for the Papua New Guinea Law and Justice Sector. This follows our successful development of a sentencing database for PNG which is now fully operational. The pilot ICCSD was initially tested in three provinces. Following successful completion of the pilot phase and renewal of the agreement, the ICCSD is now being expanded to four more provinces of PNG. The system has been designed to track and monitor cases from the point of being charged by the police to the point of dispensation of penalty for all types of criminal cases including appeals. All vital information will be shared among law and justice agencies of PNG and be readily accessible through this single source allowing for significant improvement in data quality, currency of information and the way criminal cases are managed.
- We have developed interactive learning modules for suggested jury directions
The Commission has developed interactive learning modules for suggested jury directions published in the Criminal Trial Courts Bench Book. These modules are available as a stand-alone app called JCILR, for both Apple and Android devices.
- International Judicial Education and Training journal Issue 6 published in December 2018
The Commission has partnered with the International Organization for Judicial Training to publish Issue 6 of the IOJT’s journal Judicial Education and Training. The journal publishes topical articles on the education and training of judges and justice sector professionals around the world. Most of the articles derive from the IOJT’s successful 8th International Conference on the Training of the Judiciary, held in the Philippines, in November 2017.
- International Organization for Judicial Training judicial training principles
The Commission is a member of the International Organization for Judicial Training (IOJT) and participated in the 8th International Conference held in Manila, the Philippines in late 2017. The conference unanimously resolved to adopt the Declaration of Judicial Training Principles. The principles apply to the IOJT’s 129 member training organisations.
- Cultural diversity online training program published
The Commission has developed an online training module on cultural diversity for judicial officers, in partnership with other Australian judicial education providers. The training package is divided into the following modules:
Stereotyping, assumptions and prejudices
Plain English principles
Hard-to-understand forms of communication
Assessing the need for interpreting assistance
Working with interpreters and translators
The training program may be accessed on the Judicial Council of Cultural Diversity (JCCD) website. An article about the training program by the Chair of the JCCD, the Honourable Chief Justice Wayne Martin AC, has been published in the June 2017 issue of the Judicial Officers’ Bulletin.