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Member Profiles

Raul Ponce-Hernandez

 

Deborah Parnis

In addition to work in the areas of cultural theory and Canadian popular culture, for the past five years most of my research efforts have been focused on the interface of medicine, health care and law, with an emphasis on the role of science and technology:

a) With the aid of a SSHRC-funded Standard Research Grant, I have been examining the institutional responses to sexual assault, looking especially at the medicolegal dimensions and the role of forensic evidence in the processing of rape cases. The first two phases of this project were based on a quantitative study of the impact of medical evidence in legal proceedings, and the second was an investigation into the technologies and practices of medical evidence collection which involved surveying and interviewing several hundred sexual assault nurses, nurse examiners, physicians and forensic scientists across the province of Ontario. The third and current phase is centred on a provincial-level qualitative study of sexually assaulted women with respect to their experiences with sexual assault care and treatment centres and medical forensic evidence collection. The goal of this project is to determine the nature of medicolegal practices and assess their effectiveness for both health care and the legal processing of sexual assault.

b) Through my affiliation with research scientists at the Centre for Research in Women’s Health (CRWH), I am involved in a SSHRC-funded project centred on examining court documents to determine the ways in which medical evidence and medical experts have been used in judicial decision-making in sexual assault cases.

c) In collaboration with a research partner at the CRWH, I have recently completed a World Health Organization commissioned report on health care models for the provision of services to sexually assaulted persons. This report is to be integrated into WHO. global policy recommendations to be made in 2003-04. We continue to play an advisory role in the development of that policy.

Professional Affiliations/Consulting

2002- Consultant, World Health Organization (Geneva, Switzerland)

1998- Affiliated Researcher, Centre for Research in Women's Health (A Partnership of the University of Toronto and the Sunnybrook & Women's College Health Sciences Centre)

1998-99 Consultant, Provincial Review Committee on The Sexual Assault Evidence Kit
(Ontario Ministry of the Solicitor General)

1996-97 Research Consultant, Women's Health Care Centre (Peterborough) Principal investigator on a study examining the design, implementation and impact of the Sexual Assault Evidence Kit.

1995 Evaluation Consultant, Women's Health Care Centre (Peterborough) Provision of data entry and interpretation services with respect to an evaluation of the Voices of Women program for support for female victims of sexual abuse.

Recent (Relevant) Publications

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. Forensic Nursing: Examining the differences in opinions and practices between SANEs and non-SANEs. Applied Nursing Research, (forthcoming).

Parnis, D. & Du Mont, J. (2002). Examining the standardized application of rape kits: An exploratory study of post-sexual assault professional practices. Health Care for Women International, 23(8).

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2001). Constructing bodily evidence through sexual assault evidence kits. Griffith Law Review, 10(1), 63-77.

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2000). Sexual assault and legal resolution: Querying the medical collection of forensic evidence. Medicine and Law, 19(4), 779-792.

Select (Unpublished) Reports

Du Mont, J., Parnis, D. & ONSACT (2002). Overview of the sexual assault care and treatment centre model. Prepared for the World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.

Parnis, D. (1997). Sexual assault and forensic evidence practices: A case study of the Peterborough region. Prepared for the Women's Health Care Centre, Peterborough, ON.

Parnis, D. (1996). Voices of Women support group evaluation. Prepared for the Women's Health Care Centre, Peterborough, ON.

Select Invited Addresses

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2003, May). How do we understand and evaluate the effectiveness of medical forensic evidence in post-sexual assault proceedings?”. Keynote address to be given at the annual convention of the Ontario Network of Sexual Assault Care/Treatment Centres, Hamilton, ON.

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2003, May). SANEs and non-SANEs: Are there differences in how they work and think?”. Presentation to be made at the annual convention of the Ontario Network of Sexual Assault Care/Treatment Centres, Hamilton, ON.

Parnis, D. (2002, June). Methodological challenges and conceptual dilemmas in medicolegal research. Presentation made at the Sunnybrook & Women's College Health Sciences Centre "Research in Progress" seminar series, Toronto, ON.

Parnis, D. & Du Mont, J. (2002, March). Nursing in the forensic context: The value of a SANE approach. Presentation made at the annual convention of the Ontario Network of Sexual Assault Care/Treatment Centres, Toronto, ON.

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2001, June). Science, sexual assault and the law: Can a sexual assault evidence kit generate ‘facts’?. Paper presented at the Annual Forensic Conference of The Mental Health Centre Penetanguishene and the Ontario Ministry of Health, “Science, Violence and the Court”, Penetanguishene, ON.

Select Refereed Conference Presentations

Parnis, D., Du Mont, J. & Desiato, C. (2002, June). Engaging physicians in the service of the courts: An investigation of professional practices across professional boundaries. Paper presented at the Congress of Social Sciences and Humanities, Canadian Sociology and Anthropology Association, Toronto, ON.

Parnis, D., Du Mont, J. & Gombay, B. (2002, May). Patient, complainant, client, rape victim. Tracking subordination and resistance in the construction of medicolegal identities. Paper presented at the Congress of Social Sciences and Humanities, Canadian Women’s Studies Association, Toronto, ON.

Du Mont, J., Parnis, D. & Desiato, C. (2002, May). Forensic medical evidence collection in sexual assault: An assessment of two models. Poster presentation made at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2nd National Sexual Violence Prevention Conference, “Research & Practice in Sexual Violence Prevention: Enhancing the Dialogue”, Chicago, Ill.

Parnis, D. (2002, March). The shaping of ‘experts’: A case study at the intersection of medicine and law. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society, Boston, MA.

Parnis, D. (2001, November). Forensic technology and the institutional response to sexual assault: Uncovering the structural contradictions and multiple interpretations of a medicolegal tool. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Society for the Social Studies of Science, Cambridge, MA.

Parnis, D. & Du Mont, J. (2001, June). Conflicting confessions and bodily betrayals: The nexus of sexual assault, medicine and law. Paper presented at the Eleventh Annual Women & Society Conference, Poughkeepsie, NY.

Desiato, C., Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2001, March). The sexual assault evidence kit study: An overview of preliminary findings. Paper presented at the annual convention of the Ontario Network of Sexual Assault Care/Treatment Centres, Sudbury, ON.

Parnis, D. (2001, March). Explorations in the culture of science and technology: Problematizing the medicolegal response to rape. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Eastern Sociological Society, Philadelphia, PA.

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (2000, December). Bodies of evidence: Forensic technology and the legal processing of sexually assaulted women. Paper presented at the Australian and New Zealand Law & Society Conference, Brisbane, Australia.

Du Mont, J. & Parnis, D. (1999, August). What determines police decision-making in sexual assault cases? Poster session presented at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association, Boston, MA.

 

 

 

 

 

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