26 September 2023

Public feedback called for new law penalties

Start the conversation

The Law Reform Commission of Western Australia has called for public feedback concerning the updating of the State’s sexual offence laws and their maximum penalties.

The Commission has called for submissions from the community in response to the second volume of its Discussion Paper released last week as part of a review of the State’s laws.

The Attorney General, John Quigley asked the Commission to consider potential reforms and make recommendations about modernising the State’s approach to sexual offending.

The Commission released its first volume of the Discussion Paper with a Background Paper in December and the second volume is now available.

The Commission said Volume 2:

* Considers the definitions of terms used in sexual offence laws and asks whether they should be modernised or amended;

* Examines the substantive sexual offences currently contained in WA law and asks whether these provide sufficient protection;

* Considers whether any existing sexual offences are outdated and should be modernised or amended; and

* Examines the maximum penalties for sexual offences and asks whether they should be amended.

Volume 1 considers ‘objectives, consent and mistake of fact’.

Mr Quigley said the Discussion Paper raises concerns held by the community and the Minister for Women’s Interests, Sue Ellery said the review was an important opportunity for Western Australia’s community to play a part in deciding how the State’s laws might be amended to reflect changes in social expectations.

“Considering these issues and providing feedback is an important step towards achieving just outcomes for victim-survivors of sexual violence,” Ms Ellery said.

Chair of the Law Reform Commission, Lindy Jenkins said publication of the Discussion Paper was a vital part in the consultative process of the review.

“We’re grateful for the submissions received from stakeholders and the community so far and look forward to further contributions,” Ms Jenkins said.

Both volumes of the Discussion paper and the Background Paper can be accessed on the Commission’s website at this PS News link which also has an online survey as well as information on how to lodge a submission.

The Commission intends to receive submissions relating to Volume 1 until Friday 17 March and those relating to Volume 2 until 6 April.

The Commission is expected to report its final recommendations on 1 July.

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.