New data has revealed the widespread extent of physical and sexual violence in Australia, as the Berejiklian Government continues to delay a long promised strategy to prevent sexual assault in NSW.
Today, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare released a report which revealed that one in six women have either been sexually or physical abused by a current or former partner.
These concerning new statistics reveal how much more there is to be done by all levels of Government in Australia to address the high rates of domestic violence and sexual assault. This week has also marked the release of the Red Zone Report which outlined the shocking hazing rituals at universities across Australia.
Unfortunately, the Berejiklian Government has failed to develop a Sexual Assault Strategy, to prevent sexual assault in NSW, which Acting Shadow Minister for Women and the Shadow Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, Jenny Aitchison has repeatedly called for.
The NSW Government originally promised the strategy in early 2016, and then promised its release in November 2017, but it has still not been delivered.
The Liberal-National Coalition also made devastating cuts to women’s refuges in 2014.
In contrast, the NSW Labor Opposition has committed to a number of policies which would work towards preventing domestic violence and sexual assault. A Foley Labor Government would sign NSW up to Our Watch, an organisation which will drive nationwide change in the culture, behaviours and power imbalances that lead to violence against women and children. Labor has also committed to implementing respectful relationships training for all students from Kindergarten to Year 12.
Under Labor, Women NSW would be returned to the Department of Premier and Cabinet to place women’s issues at the heart of Government decision making. The Labor Opposition has also committed to extending ten days paid domestic violence leave to every single worker in NSW.
Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Jenny Aitchison
“These statistics show how important it is for the NSW Government to immediately release their Sexual Assault Strategy and show their commitment to reducing the rates of sexual violence.
“This Government has not prioritised assisting the victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in NSW. The Berejiklian Government has failed its duty of care to our most vulnerable citizens.”