Domestic violence has been brought to the forefront of community consciousness and the silence has been broken. Yet, many women and their children live in fear, where the real terror that impacts their lives is not an external force but one within the walls of their home.
Domestic violence is the leading cause of homelessness for women and children.
Many are unable to live in their homes because the risk of abuse is too great. Forced to flee, a growing number of women and children are living in cars, caravan parks, boarding houses, refuges or couch surfing. Our homes should be safe havens but for some women they are places of fear, control and intimidation. For them, fleeing is the better option, despite the cold and uncertainty.
On average one woman a week is killed as a result of intimate partner violence. Women are three times more likely than men to experience violence from an intimate partner.
I invite you to dedicate some of you time to increasing awareness of the scourge of domestic terror and working to prevent it from occurring at all. It seeks to create a change in culture that allows this violence to take place in which violence against women is no longer misunderstood, excused or joked about. One of the ways it does this is by operating prevention programs.
If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, call for advice or support.