Call for National Response to Family Violence Royal Commission
5 April 2016 at 10:11 pm
The Law Council of Australia has called on the Council of Australian Governments to seize the opportunity for national, intergovernmental action following the release of the Victorian Royal Commission Report into Family Violence.
The Victorian Royal Commission into Family Violence made 227 recommendations in a report tabled in the Victorian Parliament last week and received widespread praise from the Not for Profit sector and the community generally.
Law Council of Australia President Stuart Clark said a number of the report’s recommendations could be seized on by COAG leaders, including the recommendation to adopt family law reforms that reduce fragmentation of jurisdictions in cases involving family violence.
Clarke said other recommendations included the creation of a single national database for family violence, child protection and family law orders, judgments, transcripts and other relevant court documentation, the development of a national family violence risk assessment framework and tool, the expansion of resourcing for legal services to resolve the current overburdening of duty lawyer services in family violence matters and the development of safety hubs.
“The nation’s leaders have been presented with a golden opportunity to stand on the shoulders of the Victorian Royal Commission and act decisively to reduce family violence,” Clark said.
“The recommendations we know will have a real effect have been laid out. We now need genuine national leadership to get them implemented.”
The latest COAG meeting in Canberra on Monday noted the outcomes of the Victorian Royal Commission into Family Violence.
It also welcomed the final report from the COAG Advisory Panel on Reducing Violence against Women and their Children, headed by Ken Lay with Rosie Batty and Heather Nancarrow.
“All COAG members remain committed to making sure that women and their children live free from violence in safe communities,” the communique said.
“The final report notes that, despite current efforts, rates of violence against women remain unacceptably high and negative gender-based attitudes continue largely unchallenged. In its final report, the Panel advises COAG of the need for collective, long-term action and leadership in order to address gender inequality and to achieve lasting change in community attitudes which underpin and enable violence.”
A COAG Summit on Reducing Violence against Women and their Children would be held in Brisbane at the end of October 2016.
Check out the latest episode of Not for Podcast. Not for Profit leaders and policy experts who were in the official report launch “lockup” share their insights about how the Royal Commission’s recommendations are likely to play out.