MEDIA RELEASE: Domestic violence is a "national emergency"

Member for Maitland Jenny Aitchison has declared domestic violence a “national emergency” in the wake of horrific figures showing that this year alone 58 women have died from the effect of family violence.

According to the NSW Recorded Crime Statistics in June 2015, there was an 11.4% increase in domestic violence related assaults in the Maitland LGA, increasing from 401 assaults in the twelve months to June 2015, up from 340 in the twelve months to June 2014.

Around Australia, every three hours a woman is hospitalised due to domestic family violence while three women a week suffer head injuries.

“At a recent school visit, I was shocked to hear a teacher say that domestic violence was the single biggest issue affecting children’s education,” Ms Aitchison says. “If children stopped experiencing domestic violence, there would be much better educational outcomes for them.”

Ms Aitchison says governments at all levels are making major announcements about domestic violence programs but have so far not introduced any to Maitland.

“Most of the focus of consultation appears to focus on police and refuges, however we need to be including other professionals such as doctors, lawyers, community nurses and teachers who see the impact of domestic violence in our communities.”

“We need to ensure that everyone in our community is safe from domestic and family violence. If we cannot protect people in their homes, where on earth will they be safe?”

To watch video of the speech:

To read the full text on Hansard:

To download the original release click here.

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