Unlawful migrant labour exploitation in Australia

Marie Segrave1
1Monash University

This paper will draw on recent research focused on irregular migrant labourers experiences in Australia. It will consider the limited recognition of the exploitation experienced by those without work rights. It will explore the contemporary policy and legal climate and the potential implications of recent commitments, including the introduction of the Modern Slavery Bill.

Forced Marriage: interrogation the Australian response

Laura Vidal1
1Good Shepard Australia

This paper will draw on recent findings from a Churchill Fellowship, reviewing international responses to Forced Marriage. It will consider the shifting responses in Australia including the inclusion of forced marriage in the Commonwealth Slavery and Trafficking offences, and the Victorian push towards inclusion of forced marriage within family violence legislation.

The Modern Slavery Act: limits and possibilities

Heather Moore1
1Salvation Army Freedom Partnership

This paper will focus specifically on the development of the MSA and the limits of the proposed legislation. The paper will background the civil society push for a range of inclusions that were ultimately abandoned in the Bill, and will consider the potential consequences of the legal framework in terms of making an impact on exploitation in Australia and beyond.

The voluntary sector in prisons in England and Wales: Where are we and what lies ahead?

Professor Rosie Meek3
3Royal Holloway University of London, Egham, United Kingdom

There is a strong history of voluntary sector involvement in British prisons, spanning involvement in a wide range of services, including prisoner education, healthcare, housing support and through-the-gate provision. Austerity measures of recent years have further strengthened the role that these diverse organisations play in the care and rehabilitation of our burgeoning prison population. This paper will outline the current context and set out some key challenges that lie ahead for the voluntary sector in prisons, with particular attention to the changing commissioning landscape and a raft of prison and probation reforms.


Professor Rosie Meek is a psychologist in the School of Law, Royal Holloway University of London, UK. Her research (primarily with Dr Alice Mills) has explored a wide range of features of voluntary and community sector involvement in Criminal Justice, with a particular focus on prisoner rehabilitation. She is co-editor of the 2016 text ‘The Voluntary Sector in Prisons’ (Palgrave).

Valued, independent organisations or ‘little fingers of the state’?: The position and influence of NGOs in criminal justice in New Zealand

Dr Alice  Mills2
2University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in New Zealand have an enduring history of providing services for people leaving prison, and are the current providers of most post-release services. Since the ‘contract crunch’ (McCarthy 1995: 8) of the early 1990s and the widespread introduction of competitive purchase-of-service contracts, NGOs in New Zealand have largely been required to accept ‘government-specified standards and outputs’ (Tennant, 2007: 126). This has led to concerns that they have become the ‘little fingers of the state’ (Nyland, 1993) and considerable frustration amongst NGOs themselves with the state’s apparent reluctance to recognise their expertise, strengths and autonomy. Furthermore, NGOs in criminal justice have faced the additional challenge of operating in a climate that has been dominated by penal populism and has been hostile to groups involved in helping offenders. Drawing on several research projects, this paper will examine relationship between the NGO sector and the state in criminal justice in New Zealand, with a particular focus on organisations that provide post-release housing and support. It will further examine the political position of NGOs and consider the potential opportunities to strengthen their role and increase their influence in New Zealand society, given the current government’s desire to reduce both recidivism and the prison population.


Dr Alice Mills is a Senior Lecturer in Criminology in the School of Social Sciences at the University of Auckland. She has conducted several research projects examining the role and position of non-governmental organisations and on the importance of stable housing for people released from prison. She is currently leading a 3-year study into the role of stable housing in reducing reoffending, funded by the Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Fund. In 2018, she has held Visiting Fellowships at the Universities of Vermont, Birmingham and Turku.

Challenges to the participation of non-government organisations in drug policy processes

Dr Natalie Thomas1
1University Of New England, Armidale, Australia

Civil society participation in drug policy processes is an important part of international and domestic drug policy systems. Non-government and civil society organisations act as key service providers and policy actors and are recognised as such by governments at the local, state, and federal level in Australia – at least at the level of policy rhetoric. There are, however, a number of practical challenges to the realisation of the important role that non-government organisations could play in drug policy processes in the Australian context. This paper reports on research on Australian non-government organisations to explore some of the challenges to their participation and functioning in the Australian drug policy system. The findings highlight issues around funding, advocacy, power, voice and participation within the drug policy field.


Dr Natalie Thomas is a Lecturer in Criminology in the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at the University of New England in Armidale, New South Wales. She completed her PhD thesis in 2017 at Griffith University on the role of the non-government sector in the Australian drug policy field.

Working with, against or through neoliberal penality? Voluntary sector futures in criminal justice

Dr  Mary Corcoran4
4Keele University, Keele, United Kingdom

The profile of the voluntary/charitable sector’s work in criminal justice has become sharply magnified in recent years as ‘Anglophone’ capitalist countries turn towards mixed-market models in public services.  Austerity, welfare state shrinkage, marketisation and new public managerialism have, in their different ways, accelerated the trend towards ‘hybridised’ criminal justice.     The transition to contracted ‘partners’ in criminal justice provision (alongside the state and for-profits) poses fundamental questions about the power relations which inhere in these partnerships, the further blurring of their functions, and the extent to which private (non-state) agencies ought to be accountable as public entities.  Drawing on a national research project covering England & Wales, this contribution will share findings about the significant paradigms shifts that are taking place in the penal voluntary sector in Britain.


Mary Corcoran (Keele University UK)  is Senior Lecturer in Criminology at Keele University, UK.  She has published widely on women in criminal justice, the voluntary sector, marketisation, and is currently focusing on prisoner health and wellbeing.   Mary co-edited (with A. Hucklesby) (2015)  The Voluntary Sector and Criminal Justice,  and is currently working on a monograph (with Williams & Maguire): The Voluntary Sector in Criminal Justice: Adaptation, Capture and Resilience  (working title).  Mary is also Visiting Fellow at the Faculty of Law, University of New South Wales (Autumn 2018).


Up-Skilling police officers online: delivering a different type of higher education for serving police

Dr Sancia West5
5University of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia

Online learning has revolutionised the way in which higher education can be delivered and maximised the opportunities for involvement by student cohorts previously unlikely or unable to engage in higher education. Current serving police officers serve as a prime example of such a cohort as their employment restricts their capacity to attend tradition on-campus classes. Yet, as the role of policing in society changes the need for higher education in the training and up-skilling of police has changed with it. More and more, recruits are being required to undertake higher education as part of their initial training and tertiary qualifications are becoming a prerequisite for some promotional opportunities. Higher education institutions have responded to this need among police and the range and depth of policing, justice and criminology courses has risen significantly as a consequence. The online delivery of a course specifically focused at the current serving officer, in order to allow them to match the skills and qualifications of their newly recruited counterparts, is one example of how higher education has responded to the needs of police organisations. Delivering a very different type of degree to a less than traditional student cohort presents an interesting case study for the role of higher education in policing and the opportunities to promote the synergies between the two. This paper looks at the perspective of a non-police trained academic in delivering online higher education to a policing student cohort and the role this plays in professionalisation.


Sancia West is an Associate Lecturer in Police Studies at the University of Tasmania and is the Course Coordinator of the Tasmania Police Professionalisation Program (TP3). The TP3 allows current serving police officers to apply prior work experience and academic study in order to complete a specialised Bachelor of Social Sciences (Police Studies). Dr West is also a Registered Nurse, with a background in health policy, providing her with an ‘outsiders’ perspective on the issue of police education.

Police education in Vietnam

Ms Melissa Jardine4
4Global Law Enforcement and Public Health Association, Centre for Law Enforcement and Public Health, Melbourne, Australia

Assumptions that police typically eschew tertiary education are based on studies in the global North or Western countries. In Southeast and East Asia, a history of university qualifications to enter civil service has also shaped the nature of police training. The presentation will draw on data from a case study of policing and police culture in northern Vietnam to describe approaches to training in a two tier system with two and four year curriculums. Interviews with police students and officers found positive attitudes towards the specialised Bachelor degree (4 year) program which is essential to progress through the ranks. Implications of the training model on career pathways and policing practices will be discussed. The analysis will consider how wider political, social and cultural influences shape the structure of police education and possibilities for reform.


Melissa Jardine is a Director for the Global Law Enforcement & Public Health Association. She was a Victoria Police officer for 10 years working at the frontline and in criminal investigations. She has a long term interest in the development of policing and security in Asia. In 2017, Melissa was selected as an Asia 21 Young Leader by the Asia Society.

Creating a positive discourse about police tertiary education – analysis from a case that works

Dr Isa Bartkowiak-théron1
1Tasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies, UTAS, Hobart, Australia

The early critics of police education agree on one topic: in its first inception, police university education was too theoretical or ‘bookish’, and was very disconnected from the field. In unpacking the results of an in-depth longitudinal program evaluation (funded 2016-2017), the data mining of 7 years of police recruit evaluations (qualitative and quantitative), enriched with the views of police coordinators and educators, provides an overview of the impact of curriculum on officers, as well as the receptivity of students towards different teaching styles. This presentation will analyse the various dynamics at stake in making police/academia partnerships work and the perspectives of students on police higher education, debunking some of the long-standing myths that have been documented in literature to date.


Isabelle Bartkowiak-Théron is a senior lecturer and senior researcher in theTasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies (TILES) at the University of Tasmania. As the head of police recruit training, she specialises in policing interactions with vulnerable people, police education and the nexus between law enforcement and public health. She is a member of several policing research governance bodies, and is the Australian Crime Prevention Council executive member for Tasmania.



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