Thursday, 28 August 2014

Violence against women and their children

The Commonwealth, state and territory governments worked with the community from 2009 to develop a National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022 (the National Plan). Over 12 years the National Plan aims to achieve a significant and sustained reduction in violence against women and their children.

We welcome the announcement on Friday June 27 by the Australian Government of the Second Action Plan to stop domestic violence and violence against women and their children. This is the second phase in a 12-year strategy to curb violence against women and children in Australia and will span the next four years, bringing to $200 m the total committed between 2009 and 2017.

Assistant Minister for Women m Senator the Hon. Michaelia Cash said migrant women are often not aware of their rights in Australia, particularly in relation to forced or under age marriage and female genital mutilation. “This is where the Second Action Plan steps in, ”Senator Cash said. “Forced and under age marriages are not tolerated in Australia, the same applies to the abhorrent practice of Female Genital Mutilation”. he plan also means that will mean foreign-born spouses who come to Australia on marriage visas will receive additional support. Their husbands or fiancés will have to provide authorities with additional information, and new material will be developed to inform these women about essential services and emergency contacts in Australia.

“We must be aware that sadly, some women coming to our country are not afforded the same rights at home and we must as a Government ensure they are equipped with the knowledge they need to prevent being subjected to violence and abuse,” Senator Cash said.

Northern Territory Minister Bess Price, who also attended the launch, said she was pleased the Second Action Plan has specific initiatives to deal with violence against Indigenous women. “ I have been a victim as well, and I know how it is, and I want to make sure the future is better for women and their families and that help is provided so women can feel safe.”