2016 is going to be a year of transformation and development for victims of family violence. Family Violence is the most prevalent form of violence in Victoria. While both men and women can be perpetrators and victims of family violence, the overwhelming majority of perpetrators are men, and the majority of victims are women and children.

There are many causes of family violence. The key causes include gender inequality, cultural background and community attitude towards women.

There are also various factors which may cause one to commit family violence and they include alcohol and drug abuse, financial pressures, mental illness, social and economic exclusion.

After 13 months of collating information and evidence, The Royal Commission into Family Violence handed down its final report in March 2016. The report makes 227 recommendations.

The Royal Commission into Family Violence: Report and recommendations for new approaches cover the following:

  • “Support and Safety Hubs in local communities throughout Victoria, to make it easier for victims to find help and gain access to a greater range of services
  • new laws to ensure that privacy considerations do not trump victims’ safety—with a Central Information Point to funnel information about perpetrators to the Hubs
  • an immediate funding boost to services that support victims and families, additional    resources for Aboriginal community initiatives and a dedicated funding stream for preventing family violence
  • a ‘blitz’ to rehouse women and children forced to leave their homes, supported by expanded individual funding packages
  • an expanded investigative capacity for police and mobile technology for front-line police, including a trial of body-worn cameras
  • more specialist family violence courts that can deal with criminal, civil and family law matters at the same time
  • stronger perpetrator programs and increased monitoring and oversight by agencies
  • family violence training for all key workforces—including in hospitals and schools
  • investment in future generations through expanded respectful relationships education in schools
  • an independent Family Violence Agency to hold government to account.”

Berry Family Law can assist victims of Family Violence through the Courts and can also refer them to the necessary Government and Community Organisations for assistance.

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