Government, corporate and community leaders unite behind White Ribbon

JOINT STATEMENT

Legislating against coercive control and highlighting the role men play in fostering cultural change have been key topics at the Queensland Government’s White Ribbon Day Breakfast in Brisbane today.

The annual event encourages corporate and community-led action to prevent domestic and family violence.

Addressing attendees at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said preventing and responding to domestic and family violence was a priority shared by Government, business and the broader community.

“Our message is clear – we want Queensland women and children to live a life free of violence,” the Premier said.

“The theme of this year’s White Ribbon Day is ‘How Can Men Make Change? Learn, Give, Take Action’ – a reminder of the critical role men play in changing attitudes and behaviours, which contribute to domestic and family violence.

“This morning we heard from a panel of influential male leaders including Inspector Ben Martain, Harris Andrews, Dr Brian Sullivan and Michael Jeh, who discussed practical steps men can take to intervene and address violent rhetoric and behaviours, and how to support gender equity in the workplace.

“As Chair of the Women’s Safety and Justice Taskforce, the Honourable Margaret McMurdo AC also provided an update on the wide-ranging community consultation the taskforce has undertaken this year, to support their recommendations regarding coercive control and women’s experiences of the criminal justice system.

“We also heard from Sue and Lloyd Clarke honoured recently as the 2022 Queensland Australian of the Year recipients for combating domestic violence after the horrific murders of their daughter Hannah and grandchildren.”

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Shannon Fentiman said the Palaszczuk Government was committed to ending violence against women.

“And a crucial part of our work will be legislating against coercive control,” Minister Fentiman said.

“However, if we are to truly tackle domestic and family violence we need cultural change in our communities and we need men and boys to respect women and girls.”

The Premier shared progress the State has made thanks to a record $600 million investment since 2015 to tackling the problem, by funding domestic, family and sexual violence programs, services and strategies.

The Year 6 Highlights Card of the Queensland Government’s 10-year Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Strategy 2016-2026 draws heavily on the Queensland Social Survey 2021 also recently released, which measures Queenslanders attitudes toward domestic and family violence.

The Premier said the report shows that more Queenslanders are recognising what constitutes domestic and family violence, including controlling and intimidating behaviours.

“There’s been an enormous effort to increase awareness of domestic and family violence in all its forms – in the classroom and in the workplace,” the Premier said.

“In the last 12 months, 42 per cent of Queenslanders reported their workplace had engaged in domestic and family violence prevention initiatives – increasing from 26 per cent recorded in 2017.

“And 96 per cent of Queenslanders agreed teaching children about respectful attitudes and behaviours in relationships will help reduce domestic and family violence in the future.

“However, we recognise more needs to be done to increase community confidence to report domestic and family violence incidents, and we will continue to work to educate and empower Queenslanders on how they can intervene in a safe, proactive and respectful way.”

Other key results from the Year 6 Highlights Card include:

  • 100,976 calls were made to support lines in 2020-21 compared to 128,829 in the previous year.

  • In 2020-21 police attended nearly 120,000 DFV related matters, a 13 per cent increase on the year before.

  • 69 per cent of Queenslanders reported they would call the police if they were aware of physical domestic and family violence involving a neighbour, compared to 78 per cent in 2020 and 79 per cent in 2017.

  • Duty lawyers provided 25,099 hours of legal assistance and advice to aggrieved and respondent persons involved in domestic and family violence matters, increasing from 22,592 hours in 2019-20

  • 26 per cent of domestic and family violence court applications were dealt with in a specialist court environment with dedicated magistrates and specialist wrap around support services.

To read the Year 6 Highlights Card, visit www.justice.qld.gov.au/initiatives/end-domestic-family-violence/our-progress

Proceeds from the Queensland Government’s White Ribbon Day Breakfast will be donated to White Ribbon Australia (ABN 57126739544) and DVConnect (ABN 66101186476).

The White Ribbon Day Breakfast is proudly supported by 4KQ, 97.3FM, 4BC 882, B105, Triple M, NOVA 106.9, Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, MediaCom, Publicis Worldwide and The Weekend Edition.

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