Shocking figures revealing one woman is killed by an intimate partner every week in Australia has prompted a new plan to reduce high rates of domestic homicide across the country.
The federal government unveiled a five-year action plan on Wednesday, which aims to reduce the number of female victims of intimate partner violence by 25 per cent each year.
It also includes the nation’s first ever targeted plan to reduce gender-based violence in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
One in four women have experienced intimate partner violence since the age of 15, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, with Indigenous women six times more likely to be victims of domestic violence homicide.
Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth said greater investment into prevention and early intervention was “critical.”
“I’m not scared of being ambitious about this and I think it does need concerted effort,” Ms Rishworth said.
“We need to invest, quite frankly, across the board if we want to see ongoing reduction in the deaths of women at the hands of their intimate partner.
The plan’s announcement follows dozens of recent cases of women being murdered by intimate partners.
In 2021, the body of 21-year-old nursing student Jasmeen Kaur was found in South Australia after she was abducted by her ex-boyfriend and buried alive in a shallow grave.
Tarikjot Singh was jailed for at least 22 years earlier this month after pleading guilty to Miss Kaur’s murder.
All states and territories have agreed to the new domestic violence action plan, which includes a plan specifically designed to reduce rates of domestic and family violence against Indigenous women and children.
According to ABS data, Indigenous women are 34 times more likely to be hospitalised because of violence than non-Indigenous women.
The government will establish a national peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander family safety and a men’s advisory body.
Independent Senator Lidia Thorpe welcomed the plan and said it was a good first step.
“This is a plan that we were calling on the previous Coalition government to make a priority, so it’s certainly welcomed and it’s certainly well fought for by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women out there ” Senator Thorpe said.
“Our needs are different, and we need to have a dedicated resource and plan to not only stamping gender-based violence, but the racism that comes with that when we seek help.”
1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)
Lifeline 13 11 14
National Sexual Abuse and Redress Support Service 1800 211 028