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​Queensland focuses on prevention in Domestic and Family Violence Month

May 26 2016 By Hannah Grant, Media and Ambassador Program Manager

Queensland is stepping up efforts to prevent violence against women and their children in the state’s Domestic and Family Violence Month, newly appointed Our Watch Ambassador and survivor advocate Rachel Kayrooz said today.

“May marks Queensland’s Domestic and Family Violence Month, and although domestic and family violence is a daily reality for many women, it is pleasing that this month the state has particularly focussed on the need to address this violence before it starts,” said Ms Kayrooz.

“We know that to prevent violence against women we must work in a consistent and coordinated way across all areas where we live, work and play such as schools, workplaces, and media and in communities and governments.

“This is why I’m proud many Queensland government departments and organisations have signed up to learn about Change the story: A shared national framework for the primary prevention of violence against women and their children in Australia and find out how they can contribute to this evidence-based national approach,” Ms Kayrooz said.
Today, Our Watch is providing Change the story workshops to 60 community stakeholders in Brisbane, as part of a nation-wide prevention framework workshop circuit. 

Our Watch Chief Executive Officer Mary Barry said it was a positive sign that Queensland government departments and organisations were so receptive to Change the Story and interested in a consistent national approach to preventing violence against women and their children.

“In Australia, almost one woman a week is killed by a partner or former partner. However, the good news is that violence against women and their children is preventable and Australia has a unique opportunity to lead the world on this issue,” Ms Barry said.

 “The Change the story framework outlines that although there is no single cause of violence against women and their children, the evidence shows there are certain factors that consistently predict - or drive - higher levels of violence against women. These include beliefs and behaviours reflecting disrespect for women, low support for gender equality and adherence to rigid or stereotypical gender roles, relations and identities."

Yesterday, Our Watch also delivered the opening address at the Community Services Industry Alliance’s Leading the Way - Preventing and Responding to Domestic and Family Violence through Workplace and Business Practices.

The event targeted community service industry leaders including Chief Executive Officers, senior management, and human relations and policy staff to promote leadership and stimulate action to prevent violence in the workplace.

“Workplaces have great influence over people’s lives and communities, and present the opportunity to help drive the culture change needed to prevent violence against women and their children,” said Ms Barry.

Preventing violence against women in the workplace involves creating cultures that have zero tolerance of sexism, reject discriminatory attitudes and behaviours, and support increasing the number of female leaders.

Boards, CEOs and senior leadership must lead the work in order to achieve whole-of-organisation change, as highlighted in the RMIT University report, Promising Practices in Workplace and Organisational Approaches for the Prevention of Violence Against Women.

Media contact

For enquiries or further information: Hannah Grant, Our Watch, mobile 0448 844 930, email Hannah.Grant@ourwatch.org.au

*If you cover this story, or any story regarding violence against women and children, please include the following tagline:

“If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit 1800RESPECT.org.au. In an emergency, call 000. For more information about a service in your state or local area download the DAISY App in the App Store or Google Play.”

About Our Watch 

Our Watch’s (previously the Foundation to Prevent Violence against Women and their Children) purpose is to raise awareness and engage the community in action to prevent violence against women and their children.
Our Watch was conceived of and brought into existence in 2013 by the Commonwealth of Australia and the State of Victoria. The Northern Territory, South Australian, Tasmanian and Queensland governments have also since become members of the organisation.
Our Watch’s work derives from the government’s commitment to the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010 – 2022 and gives expression to many of the activities in the Second Action Plan 2013–2016 – Moving Ahead.