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Carolyn
Pethick

Controversial author and advocate from a policewoman.

Profile


A Policewoman's Story', To Hell and Back, might be a salutary lesson for all women who dare to retaliate against men's bullying in male-dominated professions. It is brave, impassioned, and, ultimately, a sad and frustrating read.

Current work

After serving for over 30 years with Victoria Police, Carolyn Pethick is travelling Australia and afar talking to groups and businesses about her experiences of discrimination, bullying and sexual harassment within the ranks of Victoria Police.

Both her talks and her book "To Hell and Back - A Policewoman's Story', are aimed at encouraging women to speak up and report the discriminative treatment that women experience in the workplace daily. She is also educating the offenders on the long term effects that these behaviours can have on their victims. Carolyn has made it her mission to be the voice of the victims, both male and female, who are too scared or intimidated to speak out for themselves.

"I could have stayed in the Police Force and continued my career but when the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission Review into discrimination within Victoria Police was released I knew I had to resign and become a champion of change and publish my book. We all have a responsibility to encourage change."

She is also advocating for the promised compensation to be paid to the hundreds of police members who went through similar experiences that she endured. In December 2015 the Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton and the Premier Daniel Andrews publically apologised to these members and promised that no matter what the cost, these members would be compensated. Nearly three years later and this promise has still not been addressed. Despite constant calls to both Victoria Police and Politicians the "Redress Scheme" is still not in operation.

Carolyn will not give up pushing for this promise to come to fruition as she believes it will make other workplaces think twice about allowing this type of behaviour being "acceptable". "If it starts to actually cost them money then maybe they will rethink about taking appropriate action when a report is made."

There are heroes: police officers who supported her throughout; and villains, who sought to put the image of the Victorian Police Force first.
Pethick was almost broken by the systematic wrongs done to her. The final outcome was small comfort. 'It was just an administrative error. Legally you cannot do anything about it,' she was told. But this slim volume is her testament and it may serve to help others caught up in similar situations.

Today she is stronger, more resilient and vocal and wants to get to potential offenders and victims early. She speaks to high school students as well as businesses and has had great results.

In the words of one year 10 student- "Your talk has really helped me lately when I worry what people are thinking about me and then I remember what you said, they are more likely to be thinking only about themselves. It gets me through another day. ´Thank you"

Media
Expertise
Talking Points

A Policewoman’s Story


Carolyn speaks from the heart as she details her true-life experiences dealing with the very relevant issues of bullying and discrimination.

She is passionate about not now tipping the scales of justice in the opposite direction and discriminating against males. It should never be about gender. It should always be about mutual respect, dignity and equality.

Carolyn’s presentation is emotional, straight forward and captivating. It will inspire, motivate and help to empower your audience.

Topics Covered:

- Bullying and Discrimination
- Politics and the Workplace
- Social Issues
- Health & Well-being
- Positive Action

The audience will leave with:

- Many thought provoking questions that will be discussed long after Carolyn’s presentation
- A new outlook on workplace bullying - Why the “Bully” does what they do
- Don’t be the innocent bystander - there is no such thing
- What it means to overcome the isolation and bullying of workplace harassment
- It should always be about equality and respect, not gender
- We all have an inner strength
- Inspiration & motivation to be part of the solution

Business & Industry: Are you providing a safe workplace?

Presentation or Workshop

Employers

Had some managers not spoken up for Carolyn - risking their own careers - she possibly would not
be here today to tell her story and help others. They were strong people who recognised an
injustice and rather than bury their heads in the sand, they chose to speak out, to take action and try
to help. Little did they know, at the time, but their actions probably saved a life and will continue to
help others now by Carolyn being here to share her story.

Organisations also have to consider the business impact of having bullies in their workforces. With
bullied staff members feeling additional strain, potentially falling ill more frequently and likely to
consider quitting their jobs, bullying has a direct impact on productivity and profits.

Employees

Employees who face bullying in the workplace may experience a number of issues, including stress,
depression, illness, insomnia and even suicidal behaviour. These consequences influence the
workers’ lives inside and outside of the office, infiltrating all areas of day-to-day activities, family life
and broader social engagement.

Carolyn has lived through this and survived to tell her story. She lets the victims know they are not
alone and that they can speak out. She lets the offenders know, in no uncertain terms, of the impact
they are having on their victims and to seriously reconsider their behaviour.

Carolyn’s presentation will help to increase staff morale and productivity in your workplace by
encouraging your people to think outside of the box, in new and exciting ways, about what they can
do to eradicate discrimination and bullying in their own workplace.

Target Audience:

- Managers
- Employees
- Corporate
- Trades people
- HR Professionals
- Risk Managers

The audience will leave with:

- A deep understanding of what these behaviours are costing your business
- A new outlook on workplace bullying and what it means to overcome the isolation and
bullying of workplace harassment
- Why the “Bully “does what they do
- Identify what is going on with you and how to ask for help
- Don’t be the innocent bystander - Speak up

Bullying in Schools

Presentation or Workshop

Bullying in Australian schools is an important issue due to its high prevalence among Australian
students and the lasting impacts it has beyond a student’s school years.

The annual economic impact of bullying in Australian schools totals an estimated $2.3 billion,
incurred while children are in school and for 20 years after school completion. Almost 25% of
school students in Australia, or an estimated 910,000 children, experience bullying at some stage
during their time in school. It has been estimated that there are around 45 million bullying incidents
across all schools each year, instigated by around 543,000 perpetrators.

Carolyn relates her story in an emotional, straight forward and captivating way, guaranteed to hold
both your students and teachers attention. She speaks from the heart as she details her true life
experiences dealing with such a relevant issue in today’s society.

She will let the victims know that they are not alone, that they do have the inner strength, courage
and resilience to get through their ordeal and that no one has the power to dictate to them how
they should feel.

Carolyn lived through these experiences for over 30 years and is now stronger, more resilient and
passionate about helping others to see that they also can thrive to have a bright future ahead.

Target Audience:
- Students
- Teachers and all staff
- Parents

The audience will leave with:
- A bully is someone desperate for power
- No one has the power to dictate to you how you feel
- Identify how you are feeling and know when to ask for help
- You can get through it and become a stronger person
- Teachers: know when to take action
Feedback
“I congratulate you on having the courage to tell your story. I am sure your book will play an important role in promoting a better culture for women in the police force” Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews
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