Stories from the Frontline – Episode 5, Jane Inglis

Jane Inglis suffered physical and mental injuries, as well as two sexual assaults, during her time in the military. After she discharged on medical grounds, she felt like she was left to fend for herself.

“I joined the Australian Defence Force in the Army in 1991.”

“I was allocated to the Corps of Transport and was one of the first females to go into a land command transport unit. I spent 14-and-a-half years in the defence force and was medically discharged in 2005.”

“The reason I was discharged was because I had sustained a dislocated elbow, and then had surgery provided by Defence Force, which went wrong. And I ended up with a paralysed and very contracted arm for a number of years.”

“I was functioning in my job day to day, but I didn't meet the required standards, because I was on medication.”

“During my career, I was subject to two sexual assaults, and they were both handled very poorly and have continuing mental effects on me today.”

“In neither case did the perpetrator suffer any consequences.”

“I told my story to the Royal Commission for two broad reasons.”

“First, I think that the Defence Force still needs to make some significant changes in its culture and how it treats people and how it fosters everybody across the board.”

“They really need to get rid of a lot of the people that have been there a long time, because those people say they want to make changes, they put posters up, they send out beautiful training aids, but they don't practice what they preach. They're too stuck in the mud, they need to go.”

“The second is to overall the discharge process and the way that the Department of Veteran Affairs works – or often, doesn”t work.”

“After I was discharged on medical grounds, I was more or less left to my own devices and eventually became unable to work due to the physical and mental injuries sustained over my career.”

“It may surprise you to hear that, overall, I would definitely do it again in a flash.”

“I thoroughly enjoyed my military career.”

“It gave me a real sense of stability in spite of the fact that I had seven postings. And it gave me a sense of purpose.”

“It definitely enabled me to develop a lot of skills and to use my intelligence which was wasted. through my schooling years.”

“I just felt like it was like putting on a glove, you know, it really fitted.”


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Publication date: 05 June 2023
Publication type: AudioPodcast
Language: English