November 25 2013

– Twenty nine people were killed in family violence attacks in Victoria last year, shocking new police figures show.

The figures have been released after Victoria Police provided an analysis showing the true horror of family violence crime in Victoria. The 29 deaths, at the hands of a family member including an intimate partner or ex-partner, are a significant and worrying rise on the 13 people killed in family violence situations the previous year.

Last financial year, women were the victims of 29,064 attacks by male partners or ex-partners, and 341 attacks by current or ex-female partners. Women were responsible for 6122 attacks against their current or former male partners. Men were victimised 460 times by their same-sex partners.

The data was made available by Victoria Police as part of the Herald Sun’s Take a Stand campaign against family violence. It is being revealed today, White Ribbon Day, to raise awareness of, and prevent, men’s violence against women. Police would not release figures showing how many people were killed by their domestic partners.

But they said there were 44 homicide offences recorded in a family violence context last financial year, including murder, manslaughter and attempted murder. Of these, 28 victims were women or girls and 16 were men or boys. Seventeen of these crimes were carried out by former or current partners. The victims comprised 13 women and four men.

Detective Acting-Superintendent Paul Binyon, from the Victoria Police sexual assault and family violence unit, likened domestic violence to a “ticking bomb”. Det-Acting Supt Binyon said police needed to intervene early to prevent it destroying people’s lives. “Our experience is that a lot of people are very good at putting on masks and being able to deflect the troubles going on at home,” he said. “But you know that at some stage in the future those troubles are going to bubble through to the surface and present themselves in an adverse way – whether that’s through their relationships, their behaviour.

CEO of the peak body Domestic Violence Victoria, Fiona McCormack said it wasn’t good enough that women were still not safe in their own homes. “We’ve just seen yet another spate of women murdered by their partners or ex- partners in Victoria which demonstrates once again that women and children are more at risk of violence in their own homes than on the streets,” she said. “We invite all MPs to see first-hand the critical gap in resources to support families at risk, by meeting with their local family violence service.

Det-Acting Supt Binyon called on men in leadership positions to be proactive.

“Men in leadership roles need to look at support programs, assistance to staff, friends, family, to be positive role models, and to really take a leadership position.” “That’s sending a very powerful message that police won’t tolerate that behaviour and we’re taking affirmative action to address the concerns of women. They are real, those stats are real and they speak for themselves,” he said.

“This is about people feeling safe. Every citizen has a right to feel safe in their home, or walking down the street and just because they’ve ended a relationship that shouldn’t impact on their entitlement to go about their business and their personal life. “You have a right to feel safe in your home, you have a right to feel safe once a relationship has ended and you shouldn’t be subjected to threats, intimidation or damage. Or worse.”

Det-Acting Supt Binyon said family violence directly impacted children who witnessed or experienced it.

“Young children subjected to the horrors of family violence … it impacts on their ability to function normally in a whole range of their living environments, from school, the relationships they form with friends, how it shapes the young people they will become when they grow into adulthood, how they form their own personal, intimate relationships with people down the track.

“I think it’s just a really emerging issue we need to understand and the importance around early intervention to break them out of that cycle.”

Ellen Whinnettt


About Jumpin' Jack Cash

Deep connections are the most important aspect of my existence. I don’t care if people don’t know what they want. I love books. I’m cynical of love stories, although I’m romantic. I adore gardens. I like women who challenge me. I love the rain as an excuse to stay inside and dream. I'm furiously impatient. If I ask you a question best to tell me the truth as I'm likely to already know the answer. I'm a carnivore. I continuously underestimate the magic of fresh flowers in my home. I love warm rain in the summer. My mood elevates to epic proportions when the sun shines. Tell me not to do something and I'll do it twice and take photos. Running is my antidepressant. I loathe lies. I rarely forgive a lie. Loyalty and honesty are my most noble virtues, and I value them more than anything in other people. I love to love, and am able to fall in love very quickly, although it's only ever happened once. I understood myself and fixed myself only after destroying myself. My greatest excitement comes from deliberately getting lost in foreign cities. I can be extremely loud and frighteningly silent. I hate insinuations. I love storms. Justice for all. I'm a proud man, but welcome the influence of the feminine soul. I have two sisters. I’m a dreamer. I’m a deep thinker. Don’t deal with guilt trips or drama that well. I'm extremely stubborn and persistent. I'm brilliant at keeping secrets. I love driving. I become absolutely and completely lost while watching a burning fire. When the toast pops from the toaster I’m never ready and shit myself. I play the guitar, but require much improvement. Solitude and warmth of the sun are perfect together. I’ve been married once and now divorced. I’m a music junkie. Chocolate mousse is the shit. I curse too much. I find it difficult to make friends. I spent four years as a firefighter. I’ve run my own company since 1991. Bright lights, big cities. I’ve been an executive producer of a feature film. Some people don’t care, and that’s the biggest let-down of the human race. There are cures and solutions for many evils, but no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings. The sound of the Italian language being spoken is as good as my favourite music. I hate corrupt cops. I relentlessly and passionately pursue anybody and anything that sets my soul on fire. I'm a dog lover, and all my dogs are considered family members. I have an obsession with photography. I have some close friends who are household names, but shall always remain anonymous. I’m crazy but not lazy. Losing a soulmate has hurt me badly. My two young sons are the nucleus of my universe. I love airports. I love freedom. If you are dishonest or disloyal, I can erase you from my life and memory immediately and permanently. I yearn to explore, dream about and discover as many friendships, deep connections and places, one possibly can in a lifetime.
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