My father, the sex offender.

Written by Bree Stewart of breezuslives

Many aspects of Australian culture are significant in a purposeful and uplifting way. Some of the wonderful advancements over the course of our short history include Hawke’s reintroduction of Medicare, an epic day in 1975 whereby the Gurindji people were handed back their land; or perhaps more recently, the Melbourne lawyer-turned-ultra-marathon runner, Samantha Gash, currently jogging a casual 4,000 km’s across India for charity.

In spite of our amazing feats, there’s a few things that really take a blow to my lil’ Strayan’ soul. One notion that sits at the front of my noggen is this insane fact: Australia has one of the highest rates of reported sexual assault in the world, with some of the lowest Prison sentences for such an offence. According to our mates at the UN, 92 people per 100,000 of the population are sexually assaulted.

Not a lot of people are aware of the history of my own Father, it’s a curly tail, so if you have a tetley nearby please, begin to sip now… I never formed a close bond with my Father, because I never had the chance to. At the mild age of ten years old I discovered that for most of my life he lived within the cell walls of Ararat prison contemplating (I hope) why he felt compelled to rape young women. I also know for a fact that this bloke has committed more crimes than he has served time for, as well as a reduced stint due to his upstanding behaviour as an inmate, serving only three out of the eight years he was sentenced as a result of sexually assaulting a sixteen year old girl.

Truthfully, I don’t know what it will take to rehabilitate our country’s sex offenders, I do believe however that we are far too lenient on both men and women who violate another human’s entity through such an objectionable attack as sexual assault.

I have a lot of faith in this community and as such will continue to gaze into a bright future, whereby our court system provides a more progressive and suitable approach to working with sex offenders and their victims.

Until then, stay strong Australia.