The Palaszczuk Government has welcomed the recommendations of the Domestic and Family Violence Death Review and Advisory Board in its 2017-18 annual report tabled to Queensland Parliament today.
The Board – established by the Palaszczuk Government in 2016 following the landmark Not Now, Not Ever report – has handed down 13 recommendations to enhance and complement the existing response to domestic and family violence.
Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said the government would carefully consider the report’s recommendations.
“The Board plays an important role in ensuring government and community services protect the victims of domestic and family violence, while also ensuring perpetrators are held accountable,” she said.
“I thank the members of the Board for bringing their wealth of experience and insight across various sectors to this important body of work. As they have noted in their report, for each death as a result of domestic and family violence, there are family and friends who are forever changed.
“Establishing the Domestic and Family Violence Death Review and Advisory Board is one of many significant reforms the Palaszczuk Government has undertaken as we continue to address domestic violence and ensure the safety of Queenslanders, no matter who they are or where they live.”
These reforms include:
- creating specialised domestic and family violence courts, introducing strangulation as a stand-alone offence;
- amending the Criminal Code to ensure that any charge of conviction that happens in the domestic and family violence context is noted on an offender’s record;
- extending the length of domestic and family violence orders to five years;
- increasing the maximum penalty for breaches of domestic violence orders;
- publishing domestic and family violence statistics online; and
- providing funding to enhance Community Justice Groups and Community Legal Centres.
The report includes the Board’s findings from the review of the deaths of 30 women, children and men who have tragically lost their lives to domestic and family violence.
The recommendations relate to a range of government agencies, including the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women, Queensland Health and the Queensland Police Service, and aim to enhance the knowledge and training of front-line service officers, reduce recidivism risk and strengthen the response to perpetrators of domestic and family violence.
Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Di Farmer said the Palaszczuk Government is committed to stopping the scourge of domestic and family violence in Queensland.
“That is why we have committed more than $320 million to the implementation of all of the recommendations of the Not Now, Not Ever report,” she said.
“Of the 140 recommendations, 121 are for Government, and we have already completed 95.
“The Palaszczuk Government has invested significantly more than any previous government on multi-faceted approaches to tackle domestic and family violence and we believe even more can be done.
“I thank the board for their hard work and we will thoroughly consider their recommendations.”