Criminal Code Amendment Bill 2022

The Bill proposes changes to the Criminal Code Act 1924 (Tas) which relate to two broad themes: the introduction of a standalone strangulation offence, and the introduction of a new subsection into the provisions which outline consent (subsection 2A) relating to the practice of ‘stealthing’.

If the proposed amendments are made to the definition of consent, TasCOSS recommends replacing the words, ‘tampers with the condom’ in 2A(b) with the words, ‘damages the condom’. We are concerned about the vagueness of the term ‘tampers’, which is not defined in the legislation. We believe using the term ‘damages’ effectively captures behaviours such as intentionally breaking or damaging a condom without consent either prior to or during sex, which is what we understand to be the intention of this subsection.

TasCOSS believe additional support and resources are needed for organisations providing frontline training and education to raise awareness of issues relating to consent and violence against women. There are many examples of successful primary prevention education programs and training offered by Tasmanian community services. We believe ongoing funding for the continuation and expansion of these programs will be crucial to the success of any legislative reform in this area.