In Queensland, sexual offences laws are found in the Criminal Code 1989 (CC), as amended. The Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act 1978 (CLSO) contains the relevant rules of evidence.

Many of the provisions covered by this review meet good practice standards. For example, offences of sexual assault cover all forms of non-consensual sexual penetration – by penis, objects and other body parts – of all orifices. The consent provisions require an accused to actively seek to confirm consent.

The age of consent is 16 years for everyone. Consensual same-sex sexual activity is not a crime.

Other aspects of the provisions assessed here do not meet good practice standards and require reform. For example, non-penetrative offences are contained within the undefined offence of ‘indecent assault’. The moralistic terms ‘carnal knowledge’, ‘indecent assault’ and ‘indecent treatment’ are used. Corroboration is not strictly prohibited. The CLSO states that evidence of prior sexual conduct of the complainantisinadmissible,butthere are limited exceptions without adequate safeguards. Although child sexual assault provisions are comprehensive, there are no close-in-age defences to child sexual offences preventing the criminalising of consensual sexual activity between young people when one or both are under the age of consent.

The full assessment of Australia is available here.

NEXT STEPS TOWARDS REFORM: THE PACIFIC

NEXT STEPS TOWARDS REFORM: THE PACIFIC

This report examines the status of sexual offences legislation in the Commonwealth Pacific, assessing good practice and identifying where there are gaps in protection, with a particular focus on women, children, LGBT+ people and people with disability.

GOOD PRACTICE IN HUMAN RIGHTS COMPLIANT SEXUAL OFFENCES LAWS

GOOD PRACTICE IN HUMAN RIGHTS COMPLIANT SEXUAL OFFENCES LAWS

This report lays out criteria for good practice human rights compliant laws across four areas of sexual offences legislation, namely rape/sexual assault, age of consent for sexual conduct, treatment of consensual same-sex sexual activity between adults, and sexual offences in relation to people with disability.

CHANGING LAWS, CHANGING LIVES

CHANGING LAWS, CHANGING LIVES

Since 2015, the Trust's legislative reform programme has been analysing the need for the reform of sexual offence laws and delivering technical assistance to support such reform. Find out more about our Changing Laws, Changing Lives programme.

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