Eliminating Misidentification of Family Violence Perps

Elise Archer, Attorney General

The Rockliff Liberal Government is committed to doing everything we can to ensure all Tasmanians are safe, respected and free from all forms of family and sexual violence.

We know the impact misidentification in a Police Family Violence Order can have on victim-survivors and our Government will soon convene a high-level working group to examine the issue and provide advice.

Our Government will also ensure laws remain contemporary and reflect best practice.

Misidentification of the predominant aggressor is when a family violence victim is mistakenly viewed as a perpetrator, named as the respondent on an intervention order, or charged with criminal offences.

In Tasmania, Police Family Violence Orders are issued by a Sergeant or a police officer authorised by the Commissioner of Police. The incident and the PFVO are then reviewed by the Family Violence Unit and the Safe Families Coordination Unit which is represented by multiple Government agencies.

Tasmania Police in conjunction with the University of Tasmania provide extensive family violence training to recruits. They are taught not just about offences, but how to understand and support victims, and what support services are available.

New mandatory family violence training for all police officers is being introduced to help address misidentification.

Tasmania Police also participated in a forum in August 2022 that brought Tasmanian family violence specialists together to discuss their experiences of this emerging issue and to workshop proposed solutions.

Tasmania’s Third Family and Sexual Violence Action Plan, Survivors at the Centre, was released in November.

Survivors at the Centre builds on what we know works and includes new actions to refine and target our efforts towards preventing and responding to family and sexual violence, while putting the voices of victim-survivors at the centre of our approach.

Our Government is investing $100 million over the forward estimates to support the implementation of the third Family and Sexual Violence Action Plan.

Attorney General Elise Archer, Prevention of Family Violence Minister Jo Palmer and Police, Fire and Emergency Management Minister Felix Ellis will work together to review advice from the working group.

If you or someone you know is impacted by family violence:

Call the Safe at Home Family Violence Response and Referral Line on 1800 633 937

If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual violence:

Call the Statewide Sexual Assault Crisis Line on 1800 697 877

In an emergency, always call 000

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