Military Justice Legislation Amendment Bill – Second Reading – Video 8
Articles,  Blog

Military Justice Legislation Amendment Bill – Second Reading – Video 8


to proceed to the next stage I’m speaker I call go Rose go Ranma yes thank you madam Speaker again it was a pleasure to sit on the on the committee while we heard submissions or advice on this bill and the lawyers among us had some took some pleasure in questioning the the experts on some of the finer points this essentially is a bill that brings the military justice system in line with the civilian justice system and that’s important because one of the central tenets of the rule of law is that the law is clear and knowable before it applies to anyone and in this case the discrepancies between the procedural safeguards the standards for fitness to stand and even victims rights were not an alignment and therefore I would argue not really noble to those who they apply to and and you know that kind of discrepancy really kind of undermines the rule of law across those jurisdictions I would like to start by talking about the victims rights issues and this bill brings the military justice system in line with the 2002 Victims Rights Acts there’s there’s been an application in the criminal justice system at large for some time now victims of certain serious sexual and violent offending have had the right to be informed about not only the application of bail but also breaches of bail relief escape of offenders that have offended against them and the civilian justice system whereas in the military justice system victims of those same types of serious offenses have only had the right to be advised and to give their input on bail being granted so too look at that and think about it carefully even if an offender escaped custody victims in the military justice system were not advised they were not advised of bail breaches whilst they’ve been consulted on whether or not bail is granted and and they’re not advised when the offender is released so those types of offending when you think about the power and control dynamics when you think about how traumatic these offenses are to a victim and their fana when you think about that and and realize that actually by leaving them and in the dark about release or escape or bail breaches by those offenders we’re actually reached formalizing those victims to find out later to find out through you know seeing the offender whether the bail breach is actually against the victim you know the next time it happens its enormous ly traumatizing for victims not to know it and not to be involved in that process at least by being notified so the military justice system thankfully is now coming into line with what we’ve known is necessary for victims to have access to justice and the civilian system in those ways next is the procedural safeguards and I was somewhat aghast to find that and the onus of proof is reversed in the military justice system so that if charged with an offense and an accused person and the military system has to prove their innocence to a balance a probability standard whereas in the civilian system as we all know the prosecution be is the onus of proof they have to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt so that that exists because of course every accused person is is considered innocent until proven guilty so that fairness prevails in a criminal trial before we can sanction someone and I mean it is considered incredibly serious to be convicted of any crime in any jurisdiction and to be sanctioned for work for an accused person’s whole life to be effective whether it’s through their career or through imprisonment where they have not had the benefit of the presumption of innocence as goes against the siege again another central tenet of our criminal justice system so gladly this bill will bring that procedural safeguard to to protect those accused of criminal offending in a military justice system and lastly the the other important standard that’s being adopted in this bill through the civilian system is the standard of requiring two expert psychiatric reports before someone is essentially declared or considered unfit to stand trial in the criminal context unfit to stand trial means that someone has proven that they suffer from a disease of the minds that renders them unable to know the nature and quality of their actions so it’s a very high standard and this will require the same procedural framework as in the civilian system where we have two psychiatric reports before that’s proven and that again is something that’s important for consistency and sort of clarity of our law and where someone’s being sanctioned or indeed being excluded from ordinary criminal sanction so I am very happy today to come in this bill to the house because I was so shocked I had the complete lack of consistency between these two criminal justice systems and for essentially no clear reason but our law is after the passing of this bill going to be far more consistent and logical across those two jurisdictions so I’m glad to come in bill to the house I call temp and Amaro thank you madam Speaker so look it’s a privilege to take a call on the second reading now

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *