Daily Archives: August 2, 2012
Domestic Violence – A Matter of Life & Death
On Monday night’s ABC 4 Corners program presented a truly disturbing report on Domestic Violence – How authorities are failing to protect women and children in mortal danger, and failing to prevent their partners’ homicidal rage.
For those who have not seen the program it is simply compulsory viewing (View HERE ) and perhaps a step, the first of many, we all must take to make sure that in 10 years time a similar program cannot be made again because the crimes have been prevented. In many conversations around Domestic Violence often comes a hint that there is an acceptance that this is a crime that will continue forever. Imagine if we had held the same view about lynching and public execution. Neither the crime nor its inevitability are in any way acceptable and a conversation must take place across our entire community on this issue.
For decades a small section of our community have dedicated their lives to ending Domestic Violence and supporting those who have been its victims. Largely they are women working in under resourced offices, for disgracefully low pay and in sometimes very dangerous conditions. Many survive on shoe string budgets that must be begged for on a yearly basis as budget time rolls around and state governments find easy ways to slash their own costs. Despite the very real impact, life long, to both the victims and society Domestic Violence never rates a mention as a priority come election time. This is despite nearly 1 in 3 women being victims of Domestic Violence at some point in their life and each year over 130 Australians, mostly women, being murdered by the people closest to them. The impact on children is immeasurable and often unspeakable. But we must speak!
Can we possibly imagine another issue that destroys the lives of so many being treated with such neglectful silence?
It is the silence, the lack of conversation in society, the limited space in our community where those who work so hard are confined and the loneliness and isolation of the victims that must be addressed. There are many famous quotes about silence and the lack of conversation being an injustice and allowing bad things to happen. But in this context I do not look for inspiration, but reality.
Silence, Something about silence makes me sick ‘Cause silence can be violent Sorta like a slit wrist!
When it comes to Domestic Violence silence is literally deadly and the cloak of the conversation must be spread to cover our entire society, so that it provides comfort to those who live as its victims & survivors and know that they are not alone, so that it impacts the hearts and minds of politicians, sends a call to action to law enforcement and the criminal justice system and reminds those who battle away each day against this issue that we appreciate their work and seek to support them in any way we can.
The startling reality of Monday night for me was that the conversation I observed in social media was largely being had by women. This of course is of no real surprise but it must change, the conversation must shift also to include ALL men. The women’s movement, the civil rights movement etc of course all had an organic rise amongst the oppressed, but it was not until the oppressor was shown both the error of his ways and the real need for change that a societal shift could take place.
So this is simply a call to action, action in the shape of a conversation on the issue of Domestic Violence. In the vast ocean that is this issue many great organisations and workers have thrown large boulders. This is simply my attempt to throw a small stone and hope that its ripples unite with yours and together we may build a tidal wave that reaches all corners of our society.
And to further that cause I am offering as a prize a signed copy of a new book, Crazy Bitch: A Portrait of Domestic Violence? by Domestic Violence support worker Danielle Neves.
This book is not for the faint hearted, the language fits the perpetrators of this kind of crime. The words used in this book are what you would expect from violent men who abuse women. Once you get over the shock you see just how clever this book is in its description of men who commit domestic violence. This is a story that must be told, it could save women from suffering at the hands of an abuser.
To win a signed copy please reply to this post or share it to Facebook or Twitter and a winner will be chosen on Tuesday 7th August.
The challenge is simple, just as we are and have discussed throughout our society the issues of War, Climate Change, Asylum Seekers and the Olympics so must we have a far-reaching conversation on Domestic Violence. Please speak up, the ripple of your words may gently lap at the feet of a victim…, in the hope that one day they are safe, alive… a survivor!
For assistance – http://www.1800respect.org.au/