Domestic and Aboriginal family violence (DAFV) can be experienced by any member of our community. Women and children are overwhelmingly those who experience the violence.
DAFV are gendered crimes and an abuse of power, however, KWY recognizes DAFV occurs in all types of relationships. To build a strong evidence base of DAFV trends in Australia we must look at its pattern, risk factors and its social and structural causes in order to develop and deliver targeted responses and ultimately to prevent this violence.
KWY’s position does not seek the undermine the need to support all victims of domestic and Aboriginal family violence, however, our view is that policy and service system responses need to be developed within the framework of understanding that DAFV is indeed a gendered crime and that there is an overwhelmingly large evidence base to support this. This framework is vital to preventing domestic and Aboriginal family violence and improving the safety and long-term well-being of victims of domestic and Aboriginal family violence.
KWY’s supports the ongoing acknowledgement that DAFV is gendered, with the overwhelming majority of victims of intimate partner violence being heterosexual women and perpetrators being heterosexual male partners or ex-partners.
Therefore, dedicated services for women who have experienced DAFV and their families are an entirely appropriate evidence-based response. Importantly while DAFV occurs in all types of relationships regardless of gender, sex, sexuality, race, culture and class and exists in all communities, there is significant evidence suggesting that Aboriginal communities are more vulnerable because they are less likely to seek help, identify DAFV in their relationships or have a perception that their needs might not be met by mainstream services or dealt with cultural sensitively and in confidence. To build a strong evidence base of DAFV trends in Australia we must look at its pattern, risk factors and its social and structural causes in order to develop and deliver targeted responses and ultimately to prevent this violence.