Sher Campbell

Sher Campbell

Explorer of digital intervention + safety for DV victims

Tell us who you are?

My name is Sher Campbell, I am a Lecturer at Newcastle Law School – the first and leading clinical law school in Australia and Executive Member of the NSW Women Lawyers Association.

Describe the work that you do.

Along with my colleagues, Dr Colin James and Associate Professor Dr Lynne McCormack, I am researching the impact of an app used by defendants as an early-intervention technological tool that aims to provide safety for victims of family and domestic violence. Importantly, the app seeks to make defendants personally accountable, it teaches defendants how to comply with court orders and strengthens positive decision making around behaviours and emotions. The app is a digital resource that aims to reduce re-offending and help reinforce the practical and legal information given by lawyers to clients.

What inspired you to do this work?

The horrific statistics and the everyday tragedy for families! Over a 12 month period, an average of 1 woman is killed every week by a current or former partner in our country. It is a major cause of homelessness for women and children. Violence against women and children is estimated to cost the Australian economy $21.7 billion per year.

How does this work help you explore NEW solutions to problems?

Newcastle Law School is a leader in restorative justice in the community. With this framework in mind we are addressing how the justice system deals with offenders. How can we work with offenders and offer a new technological solution to keep families safe? Lawyers have little time (if any) with defendants, court is emotional, anxious, confusing and offenders don’t understand their ADVO (Apprehended Domestic Violence Order).

What’s your dream for this work?

My dream is that we work as a community to address the scourge of family violence. A whole of community approach is the solution and I want to contribute to this change. This is an emergency  and solutions can only come if we work together  to provide a wholistic solution to one of Australia’s  biggest challenges. Collaboration across disciplines will bring new energy, enthusiasm and solutions fit for purpose.

How do you imagine that this work will change the world?

We can change the world if we work with one person at a time, one family at a time.  We can address generational trauma and imagine a better future for all our children.

What would your advice be to students to inspire them to bring the spirit of enterprise and innovation into their studies and lives?

Bring the spirit of your very “human” capabilities of creativity, empathy, compassion, and emotional intelligence. Students are the change. Working in NeW Space at UON is a wonderful opportunity to be with students who are curious, energised and imaginative. We value your voice, so harness your confidence to put your ideas into action.