Sarah Malik is a Walkley-award winning Australian investigative journalist, author and television presenter. She currently works as a presenter and writer for SBS Voices. Her work focuses on asylum, surveillance, technology and its intersection with gender and race – most notably examining domestic violence, gender inequality and migration.
Her debut collection of memoir stories Desi Girl: On feminism, race, faith and belonging was published by the University of Queensland Press in 2022. Her second book Safar: Muslim women’s stories of travel and transformation was published by Hardie Grant. She also co-hosted and co-produced award winning SBS podcasts Let Me Tell You (winner of the gold Best Arts/Culture podcast at the 2022 Australian Podcast awards) and the New Writers Room podcast (her interview was awarded bronze for Best Interview at the 2022 Australian podcast awards).
Her writing has been featured in the Sydney Review of Books, New York Times, The Sydney Morning Herald, Daily Life, ABC’s The Drum, The Saturday Paper and The Guardian. She has presented and produced programs for ABC Radio National and Al Jazeera English, is a sought after speaker, presenting a keynote address at 2018 Muslim Legal Network Ramadan dinner, and at the Muslim Women and Agency Symposium hosted by the Sydney University Law School.
In 2019, she worked on a two-part investigative feature ‘Under His Eye’ looking at how domestic violence perpetrators track and surveil their partners using spyware, apps and everyday digital devices.
In 2018, Sarah was part of a team awarded three Walkley awards for an ABC investigative series on domestic violence and faith communities. Her contribution involved researching and reporting a special feature on the challenges Muslim women in Australia experience accessing religious divorce in community. The series won a Gold Walkley, Best Journalism Campaign and Best Series in the Our Watch Walkley Foundation Media awards. The Our Watch awards highlight stories shining a light on women’s rights and domestic violence issues in Australia. In 2019 she was an inaugural Our Watch fellow.
She has also presented and co executive-produced podcasts for ABC radio with David Rutledge. ‘In My Shoes’ featured on ABC Radio National’s Earshot program explores racism and the challenges of representation with the rise of the extreme right. Part two examines the intersectional experience of racism and sexism in the lives of First Nations and minority women. Sarah pursued this project after an experience of racism in the workplace: ‘Hybrid life in The Age of Trump.’
‘Majnoon’ – explores the impact of intersecting discrimination on the mental health of Muslim migrant and refugee communities. ‘Kismet’ looks at how western Muslim women navigate love, family, faith and changing gender roles. Listen to Part One (38 min), Part two (34 min) and Part three (40 min). She also presented Lives Under Hate, a two-part documentary examining the rise of white supremacy in Canada.
She has also worked as a contributing reporter for the Guardian and the New York Times covering asylum in Australia, breaking exclusive stories from a High Court challenge to the legality of detaining asylum seekers brought to Australia from Manus and Nauru for medical treatment, what life is like for Muslim detainees practising Ramadan in Villawood and disputed border advice given to a Muslim civil rights group.
The stories were recognised as a finalist for journalism excellence in the 2015 Migration and Settlement awards, nominated in the media category for the 2015 Australian Human Rights Commission awards and won highly commended at the 2015 UN Media peace prize awards.
Sarah graduated from the University of Technology, Sydney, with degrees in Law and Journalism. She began her career as a cadet journalist and reporter for the Australian Associated Press and has also worked as a journalism lecturer at Monash University.
She likes watching Bollywood films, is passionate about chai (not chai lattes or ‘chai tea’) (see viral video and swimming in the sea.