A mother who violently attacked her eight-week-old daughters, killing one, has been granted a working with children permit to work for her favourite AFL team.
Tina Terlato avoided jail for killing her daughter Amanda inside their suburban home in Melbourne on Anzac Day, 2012.
She also brutally assaulted Amanda’s twin Alicia, who will suffer lifelong disabilities.
Terlato has since been given approval to work with children under a new role with the Essendon cheer club, designing banners alongside youngsters — a decision that has left the father of her children ‘disgusted’.
‘Every time I see her face when she poses up with AFL players or when I hear about her attending games — it just brings back bad memories,’ Paul Terlato told the .
‘I’m shocked, I’m disgusted, I’m angry.
Essendon Football Club and the AFL need to stop her membership and refuse her entry anywhere in Australia.’
Tina Terlato has been granted a working with children permit to work for Essendon
When Alicia Terlato and her twin sister Amanda (pictured) were just eight weeks old when they were violently attacked by their mother.
Amanda’s injuries proved fatal, while Alicia will suffer from disabilities for life
Tina Terlato (pictured) was charged with murder, but instead pleaded guilty to one count of infanticide and was sentenced to a 12-month community corrections order
The new role sees her helping to design and construct the banner players run through before games, a job that often includes child volunteers.
In a letter sent by Essendon to its members over the hiring of Terlato the club said ‘criminal convictions don’t prohibit people from becoming members of the club’.
‘Passing a police, background check is not a requirement.
All members of the Bomber Squad are required to pass a working with children check in order to participate in activities like banner making,’ the letter obtained by the Herald Sun says.
‘If a member’s status ever changes, then we would act accordingly.’
Alicia’s father Paul (pictured) was told his surviving daughter would likely be confined to a wheelchair for life, but she has ‘defied the odds’.
Mr Terlato also praised his son Luke (left) who he says is ‘mature beyond his years’ and has helped his sister’s development enormously
The plight of the Terlato twins was secret until a suppression order was lifted in late 2019, allowing their family to finally voice their anger at the sentence Tina received.
The twins’ aunt Michelle Terlato has called for the infanticide law to be scrapped in Victoria, and with states including Western Australia doing so in recent years, it is a push that has now received support from victims’ advocates.
Introduced in England in the 1920s, infanticide intended to ensure women who killed their children would not be charged with murder, and therefore sentenced to death.
Over the years it was subsequently introduced in Victoria, New South Wales, Tasmania and Western Australia.
After a review by its Law Review Commission, Western Australia repealed it in 2008.
While the age limit for a child victim in Victoria is two years, elsewhere it stands at 12 months.
Infanticide is an applicable charge for mothers found to be of a ‘disturbed’ mind and as such was used in the case of Tina Terlato, due to claims of post-natal depression.
While she understands the intentions of such a law, her former sister-in-law Michelle Terlato believes it has been rendered ‘archaic’ over time and devalues the lives of young children.
Joe Tucci, CEO of the Australian Childhood Foundation, agrees.
Mr Tucci lobbied hard for the Victorian Law Reform Commission to repeal the law in 2004 and believes now is the time for infanticide to be once again be scrutinised.
‘It is incumbent on the law to put children first when they’re trying to protect and get justice for them,’ he said.
‘The fact that there’s an infanticide law, it’s an outdated law from my point of view, in the sense of the supports we have available for people now.
‘The most important essential tenant of the law is to protect the most vulnerable, and in these situations the most vulnerable has to be the babies.
Joe Tucci, CEO of the Australian Childhood Foundation, says it is ‘definitely’ time for a review into the infanticide law.
The last review was carried out in Victoria in 2004, during which time Western Australia has repealed the law
<div class="art-ins mol-factbox news" data-version="2" id="mol-8e0a8cc0-999e-11ea-b72a-4742d0ca32db" website who killed newborn daughter is working with her favourite team