As a community legal centre that has served the local St Kilda community for over 40 years and as the provider of the LGBTIQ Legal Service (Victoria’s only LGBTIQ+ legal service) we are deeply concerned about events connected with the arrest of Dean Laidley over the weekend.
The leaking of photographs taken inside the station, including one that appears to be taken from police records, represents an appalling breach of privacy. It may also constitute offences against laws that protect the community against police misconduct and the human rights of individuals in police custody.
These events speak to discriminatory and transphobic attitudes that sadly still appear to exist within some elements of Victoria Police, as evidenced by these actions. As a service that provides legal assistance to transgender and gender diverse people in Victoria, we are concerned these events will only further embed the distrust many people in this community already feel towards Victoria Police.
We call on Victoria Police to take immediate action against those responsible. This incident requires an independent investigation as the first of many steps that are required for Victoria Police to do better for trans and gender non-conforming Victorians, many of whom have already experienced discrimination.
It is important to note that Laidley has not yet made any statement about their current name or correct pronouns. We encourage the media and the public to use respectful and gender-neutral language when discussing this case and consider the impact their reporting may have on marginalised communities.
This incident will potentially cause feelings of humiliation and hurt for many members of the LGBTIQ+ community. If you have been affected, please contact Switchboard Victoria on 1800 184 527 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.
Media contact: Adam Valentine 0411 302 769
5 July 2019
St Kilda Legal Service and our LGBTIQ Legal Service, welcomed the opportunity to share our research and casework to make a submission in response to the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System. Our research and casework experience Before the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the Royal Commission were finalised, St Kilda Legal Service provided feedback to the Victorian Government on important themes to be included in the TOR. Read More…
28 February 2019
We’ve been working with other stakeholders across diverse sectors, to make recommendations to the Australian Human Rights Commission’s (AHRC) national inquiry into sexual harassment. St Kilda Legal Services are 1 of over 100 stakeholders in the legal, health, community, family violence and union sectors to advocate for key reforms. Together we have submitted a joint statement to the AHRC inquiry. #Power2Prevent
7 March 2018
St Kilda Legal Service, Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre and Women’s Legal Service Victoria are currently working on a project which investigates police conduct in investigating and reporting incidents of family violence. This co-authored opinion piece explores the issue using de-identified case studies to highlight the deficiencies in the police complaints system.
5 December 201
St. Kilda Legal Service is part of a coalition of 7 community legal centres concerned about the potentially unsustainable funding model, limited public housing outcomes, and inadequate consultation and relocation process of the Victorian Government’s Public Housing Renewal Program.
29 November 2017
St. Kilda Legal Service has received the largest single grant ever awarded by Victoria Law Foundation. The grant will be used to establish a specialist outreach legal service at the Victorian AIDS Council for people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ).
13 July 2016
St Kilda Legal Service is seeking to reduce the risk to affected family members under a family violence intervention order, by restricting the respondent’s access to firearms.