FEDERAL Member for New England Barnaby Joyce says domestic and family violence and sexual assault against women and children is utterly unacceptable.
This week in Parliament House was the launch of the Second Action Plan, with Coalition Parliamentarians reaffirming the Government’s strong commitment to making Australia a safe place for every woman and child.
Mr Joyce said the Abbott Government’s message is clear: violence against women and children is utterly reprehensible and will not be tolerated.
“Shockingly, the 2012 Personal Safety Survey found that, since the age of 15, around one in three Australian women have experienced physical violence and one in five have experienced sexual assault,” he said.
“It is incomprehensible to think that these statistics only represent those who have reported their experience – not those who may suffer in silence.
“The statistics also show that one woman in Australia is killed every week by a current or former partner.
Mr Joyce said in fulfilling a key election commitment, the Abbott Government demonstrated its commitment to the continued implementation of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022, with the Prime Minister Tony Abbott launching the Second Action Plan under the National Plan in late June.
“The Second Action Plan contains 26 practical actions that all governments around Australia agree are critical to focus on if we are to move ahead in reducing violence against women and their children.
“The Second Action Plan specifically focuses on improving how systems and services work together to protect and support women; improving perpetrator interventions; and continuing to build the evidence base on violence against women and their children.
“There is also a focus on understanding the diverse experiences of violence, including how it particularly affects women with disability, indigenous women and culturally and linguistically diverse women.
To support initiatives under the Second Action Plan, the Commonwealth Government has allocated more than $100 million over the next four years.
The new initiatives the Australian Government is funding to support the Second Action Plan include:
$3.3 million for CrimTrac to develop and test a prototype for a National Domestic Violence Order (DVO) Scheme, to strengthen the identification and enforcement of DVOs across state and territory borders.
$1.7 million to take the next steps in developing a national data collection and reporting framework by building a more consistent basis from which to gather, analyse and use data on all aspects of violence against women and their children. This includes $300,000 for the Australian Bureau of Statistics to augment data sets on victims and offenders.
More than $1 million for 1800RESPECT, Australia’s first national professional telephone and online counselling service, to expand its service. The new funding for 1800RESPECT is in addition to the Government’s investment of $28 million over the next four years to support existing services.
Mr Joyce said each and every citizen who lives in the New England Electorate has the right to feel safe in their homes and in their community.
“I support the Second Action Plan and the Government’s efforts to reduce, and ultimately eliminate, violence against women and their children.”