Launch of the Castan Centre’s report ‘Use of Force in Detention and Other Closed Environments’

Presented by the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law of Monash Law

Date recorded: Thursday, 19 November 2020
Zoom webinar online

To watch this past event, click 'play' on the video below:

This event launches the Castan Centre's report ‘Use of Force in Detention and Other Closed Environments’.

The report addresses concerns for the wellbeing, dignity and rights of persons in closed environments by reviewing relevant legal frameworks in light of international human rights standards. The report contains our recommendations for critical reforms needed to meet Australia's international human rights law obligations, and we highlight some additional concerns arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

We focus specifically on (a) aged care homes; (b) disability care homes; (c)  mental health facilities; (d) prisons; (e) juvenile detention centres; and (e) immigration detention centres.

A panel of experts from the above sectors are invited to discuss the report’s findings from the perspective of their respective sectors, followed by a Q&A session with questions from the audience.


Deborah Glass OBE, Victorian Ombudsman

Deborah Glass is the Victorian Ombudsman. Her 10-year term began in March 2014. She is the first woman to serve as Victorian Ombudsman. Before becoming Ombudsman, Deborah led criminal and misconduct investigations into police for the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) of England and Wales. Deborah is committed to ensuring fair and reasonable decision making and improving public administration. She holds a firm belief in public sector integrity and advancing human rights.


Professor Joseph E Ibrahim, Head of Health Law and Ageing Research, Department of Forensic Medicine,  Monash University

Joseph is Head, Health Law and Ageing Research Unit at the Department of Forensic Medicine. Joseph's academic involvement with began when he became an inaugural member of the Clinical Liaison Service (2002-2009) and the Work Related Investigation Service (2005-2009) Specialist Investigations Unit at Victorian Institute Forensic Medicine and State Coroners Office investigating the system failures associated with health care and work related deaths respectively. He is also an Associate Director with Centre of Research Excellence in Patient Safety and an Adjunct Professor, Australian Centre for Evidence Based Aged Care at La Trobe University, Faculty of Health Sciences.


Colleen Pearce, Victoria's Public Advocate, Office of the Public Advocate

Colleen Pearce is Victoria’s first female Public Advocate, a position she has held since September 2007. As Public Advocate, she is the guardian of last resort for adults with disabilities in Victoria. Under legislation, she is also chair of the Community Visitor boards.

Colleen fearlessly advocates for the human rights and interests of people with a disability and a mental illness. She has almost 40 years’ experience managing community and health services in both the government and non-government sectors.


Dr Graham Thom, Refugee Coordinator, Amnesty International Australia

Dr Graham Thom has been Amnesty International Australia’s Refugee Coordinator since 2000, working on behalf of individual asylum seekers as well as on broader human rights issues relating to refugees. Dr Thom has also been a Board member of the NSW Asylum Seeker Centre for the last 10 years.


Opening remarks and moderator

Professor the Hon. Kevin H Bell AM QC, Director of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law, Monash Law

Report introduction and acknowledgements

Karin Frodé, Policy Manager, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law, Monash Law