Protecting our Vulnerable: Justice Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 Passes

The Legislative Assembly today passed the Justice Legislation Amendment (Domestic and Family Violence) Bill 2019 to support victims of domestic, family, and sexual violence and to make our communities safer.

The Territory Labor Government is committed to delivering a justice system that protects people, meets the needs of the community and is in line with modern practices.

The Bill passed today aims to improve responses to domestic and family violence so that victims are safer and defendants are more accountable.

Amendments will help ensure more offenders undertake rehabilitation programs; create a new offence of choking, suffocation and strangulation in a domestic relationship; and enable termination of a tenancy agreement under a domestic violence order.

Amendments passed today are consistent with the directions in the Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence Framework 2018-2028,.

Further, the Bill is aligned with the directions and principles in the National Plan to Improve the Safety of Women and their Children.

As stated by the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Natasha Fyles:

“This Bill brings our Justice Legislation into the modern era, acknowledging the impacts of domestic violence on families and our community and recognising the importance of rehabilitation to prevent future offences from occurring.

“We will now see a specialist approach to domestic violence sentencing in the Alice Springs Local Court, so that rehabilitation programs can occur where it is safe and appropriate to do so.

“We will always put victims first. This is about making sure we can help stop domestic violence from occurring in the first place.

“The new offence for choking, suffocating and strangulation ensures this type of behaviour is treated seriously as a form of domestic violence.”

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