Hinch praises men's shed while on walk to push for public sex offender register

DERRYN Hinch added a pit stop to his Jail 2 Justice walk, stopping at the Ballarat East Community Men’s Shed on Eureka Street on Monday. 

Derryn Hinch at Ballarat East Community Men’s Shed on Monday. PICTURE: KATE HEALY

Derryn Hinch at Ballarat East Community Men’s Shed on Monday. PICTURE: KATE HEALY

On Sunday, as Mr Hinch was walking through Cardigan, Ballarat East Men’s Shed member Ian Humphrey stopped beside him, pulled down his window and told him a bit about the shed and his journey. 

A couple of hours later, Mr Humphrey received a call saying Mr Hinch would be stopping by on Monday. 

“If groups like the men’s shed were around 10 years ago, maybe there would have been less suicide amongst men,” Mr Hinch said. 

The walk takes him from Langi Kal Kal prison to the steps of Parliament House in Melbourne. He is collecting signatures petitioning for a nationwide public sex offender register. 

“When I got out of prison in March, I had 34,000 signatures. Since then, 80,000 have been added.

“By the time I get to Melbourne, I’m hoping to have 150,000.” 

He said the journey  wasn’t a good news trip. 

“It’s both sweet and sour. Sweet because we’re trying to do something about it and sour because of the terrible stories.”

He said Ballarat was one of the worst-affected towns in Australia. 

“This area has a terrible history with violence, with Ridsdale and Best.

He said there were currently 120 people in Ballarat on a register, that was accessible to police. 

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