16 days of Activism 2019
This November and December, Respect Victoria will run their Respect Women: ‘Call It Out’ campaign to align with United Nations 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence from 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) to 10 December (Human Rights Day).
A key facet of the campaign is to create community conversations as a result Alpine Shire Council and Alpine Health are once again partnering with local businesses to promote awareness of the campaign, encouraging people to have conversations about family violence.
Family violence is a broad term which refers not only to violence between intimate partners but also to violence between family members. This includes, for example, elder abuse and adolescent violence against parents. Family violence includes violent or threatening behaviour, or any other form of behaviour that coerces or controls a family member or causes that family member to be fearful. In Indigenous communities, family violence is often the preferred term as it encapsulates the broader issue of violence within extended families, kinship networks and community relationships, as well as intergenerational issues.
Violence against women is now recognised to be a serious and widespread problem in Australia with enormous individual and community impacts, health implications and social costs.
On average, one Australian woman is murdered each week by her current or former partner.
‘Many people ask about violence against men’ said Alpine Shire CEO, Charlie Bird, ‘All violence is wrong regardless of the sex of the victim or perpetrator, but we know that both men and women are more likely to experience violence at the hands of men, with around 95% of all victims of violence in Australia reporting a male perpetrator.’
‘While men are more likely to experience violence by other men in public places, women are more likely to experience violence from men they know, often in the family home.’ Mr Bird continued.
While there is no single cause of violence against women, evidence shows that there are four key drivers:
- Condoning Violence – attitudes, words and actions that trivialise, make light of or justify violence against women and allows people to think that violence is acceptable and excusable.
- Inequality between men and women – women continue to earn less than men, are under-represented in political and workplace leadership roles and perform the majority of domestic labour
- Gender stereotypes – gender norms are harmful to both men and women because they limit a person’s choices and opportunities
Disrespect towards women – accepting jokes and comments that reinforce the idea that women should be less powerful than men means that violence towards women is more likely to be excused.
The campaign calls on everyone to call out disrespectful and sexist behaviour, to stop normalising the early behaviours that lead to violence against women. Lyndon Seys, CEO Alpine Health said ‘though some people think this behaviour is harmless or not their business, research shows they are actually some of the most well-known causes of family violence.
For more information about prevention of all forms of family violence and violence against women, go to respectvictoria.vic.gov.au.
If you or someone you know is experiencing family violence help is available.
In an emergency call 000 for all other enquiries contact
- Centre Against Violence Family Violence Helpline 24/7 on 1800 015 188,
- If you are an adult male experiencing family violence contact Merri Health on 1300 362 739.