Domestic violence has made many women to become homeless prompting discussion by some political parties of dismantling the whole family court system. In fact, the issue has become so extreme to the extent of damaging psychological aspects of Domestic Violence. Actually, DV is not a new issue in Australia. For far too long, the separation of the public and personal spheres has kept violence a secret within homes.
As a clear statement of the community’s stance against DV, legislators should bring in a better-coordinated and stronger raft of sentences for sexual assaults of children and domestic violence cases. Tough and harder penalties should be applied to domestic violence offenders. They would cover sexual abuse, including rape of a partner, murder, and assault.
In order to appropriately punish and deter domestic violence offenders, the current splintered approach needs to strategise on how to implement a robust policy. That will help protect the community and the victims from the offenders’ cruel actions. The current move to hold discussions isn’t enough to immediately alienate the situation, although it is a great initiative that could bring some positive outcomes in the longer-term. Our families and our community at large deserve and need an immediate response.
Up until now, various agencies and groups were working almost in isolation and independently on DV solutions. Domestic violence needs a holistic community and government approach to eradicate it because it is so ingrained and widespread.
The government and community response would be dramatic and immediate if these statistics related to street violence. Hence, the figures are horrifying. Talk of roundtable discussions on domestic violence is the beginning of developing a consistent approach across different legislative and community responses, following the recent Council of Australian Governments Family Violence Summit in Brisbane.
Statistics show us that 23 per cent of women died as a result of domestic violence – the number covers female homicide victims nationally. Queensland is the leading state recording 44 per cent of the total number of women killed by their husbands nationally. So far this year the total is 66 homicides. Also, 80 women were killed by their partners last year. When men, children and extended family victims are included, the number of homicide victims increases. There were 654 women victims of intimate partner homicide in Australia between 2002 and 2012.
The Gold Coast specialist domestic violence court trial will be lead by Magistrate Colin Strofield, who has publicly endorsed the effect of the court. He is the first judge appointed.
The court is specifically dedicated to deal with domestic violence and related cases that are criminal in nature.
The full impact of domestic violence goes far beyond mere physical attacks given that it is insidious. It is spreading within the community like a hidden cancer.
“I believe changing the mindsets and stigmas that facilitate the widespread abuse is a key to holistically, sustainably and successfully addressing Australia’s staggering domestic violence rates,” said Mr. Strofield.
The incidence of domestic violence is increasingly rising in Australia despite all the good intentions and the talk. That shows that a radical solution is needed to curb the situation as soon as possible.