OFFICE FOR WOMEN AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE REFORM NEWSLETTER
Welcome to the second quarterly newsletter of the Office for Women and Domestic Violence Reform (OFWDVR), providing information on OFWDVR’s key pieces of work.
Queensland Violence against Women Prevention Plan
The Queensland Violence against Women Prevention Plan 2016-22 was released by the Honourable Shannon Fentiman MP, Minister for Communities, Women and Youth, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence on 2 November 2016.
The plan includes actions across government to prevent violence against women in three priority areas:
- Respect: primary prevention activities that shift community attitudes and behaviours that support or excuse violence against women;
- Safety: secondary prevention activities that decrease risk and reduce the impact of violence; and
- Justice: tertiary prevention activities that respond to violence effectively and prevent re-offending.
Read more about the Queensland Violence against Women Prevention Plan here.
2017 Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month Community Grants
The 2017 Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month Community Grants funding round is now open!
Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month is held annually in May to raise community awareness of domestic and family violence and to send a clear message that violence of this sort will not be tolerated in Queensland.
Each year the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (DCCSDS) provides one-off grants to community organisations to hold awareness raising events, projects or activities during May that:
- raise awareness about the occurrence and impacts of domestic and family violence in the Queensland community and provide information about help available;
- promote partnerships and collaboration across the community in acting to prevent domestic and family violence;
- engage and educate Queenslanders to create a community that supports respectful relationships, practices positive attitudes and behaviours and promotes a culture of non-violence; and
- challenge Queenslanders to consider their attitudes towards domestic and family violence and recognise that a whole of community response is needed to make a difference.
Eligible organisations are invited to apply for funds up to $5,000 to host events, projects or activities during Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month in May 2017. For further information, go to our website.
Toward Gender Parity: Women on Boards launch
Minister Fentiman launched the Toward Gender Parity: Women on Boards Initiative and released a research report at an event at Parliament House on 5 October 2016.
Consultancy agency Deloitte Access Economics was commissioned to assist in developing and implementing the initiative, and also prepared the Toward Gender Parity: Women on Boards Initiative Research Report (download a copy of the summary or/and full report from our website). The report is the first step in a suite of activities aimed at addressing the lack of gender diversity on Queensland boards.
The initiative, which will be delivered over the next 3 years, will include:
- gender parity action plans, designed to support boards and other key stakeholders (e.g. board recruiters) to implement plans to facilitate achievement of the Queensland government targets;
- establishment/enhancement of mentoring schemes, in conjunction with existing relevant industry associations and networks, to facilitate progression of women into leadership positions; and
- mechanisms to better connect women with education and training opportunities, to help them gain the relevant skills and capabilities to take board positions as they emerge.
For more information on the initiative, contact Cindy Baker, Principal Program Officer, Office for Women on 3006 4049 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Queensland Women’s Week 2017
In 2016 Queensland expanded International Women’s Day celebrations into a week-long, state-wide series of events and activities called Queensland Women's Week. Community organisations and local councils were among those to share in grants to host Queensland Women's Week 2016 events and activities which celebrated the achievements of Queensland women of all ages, cultural backgrounds and languages. Funded events ranged from an aviation event where volunteer pilots inspired women and girls to take to the skies, to a 12-hour all-woman community radio broadcast.
Funding will once again be available to support celebrations as part of Queensland Women’s Week 2017, to be held from 6-12 March. Grant applications will open in late 2016, with full details to be published on our website.
Brisbane hosts the COAG National Summit on Reducing Violence against Women and their Children
The Prime Minister and Premier Palaszczuk hosted an important COAG National Summit on Reducing Violence against Women and their Children, in Brisbane on 28 October 2016. The Summit had the theme: Connect. Act. Change.
The Summit was attended by First Ministers and Women’s Safety Ministers from across the country. The Summit also brought together over 140 experts from frontline services, business, community and academia.
The Summit featured addresses from the Prime Minister and the Queensland Premier and roundtable discussions on major topics on prevention of violence:
- family violence and the court system
- the effect of domestic violence on children
- diverse experiences of domestic violence
- Indigenous insights and experiences
- using behavioural insights to reduce domestic violence
- organisational best practice in workplace responses to domestic and family violence (hosted by Queensland Government)
- innovative uses of technology
- technology-facilitated abuse
Obtain a copy of the Summit Communique and keep in touch with developments following the Summit at https://coagvawsummit.pmc.gov.au/.
Legislation changes strengthen response to domestic violence
On 11 October 2016 the Queensland Parliament passed the Domestic and Family Violence Protection and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 (PDF), which made significant amendments to the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012 to better protect victims of domestic and family violence and their families, hold perpetrators to account for their actions and support the delivery of integrated service responses.
Key improvements include:
- introducing a framework which enables key government and non-government entities to share information for the purpose of assessing risk and responding to serious domestic violence threats;
- expanding the protection police officers can provide to victims prior to the court deciding whether to make a domestic violence order (DVO);
- requiring the court to focus on the protection needed by a victim in determining the appropriate duration of a protection order;
- requiring the court to consider any existing family law parenting order it is aware of and whether that order needs to be varied or suspended if it is inconsistent with the protection needed by the victim or their children; and
- increasing maximum penalties for breaches of police protection notices and release conditions to achieve consistency with the penalty for breaching a DVO.
The amendments also implement model laws endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments to enable Queensland to participate in the National Domestic Violence Order Scheme. This scheme will provide for the automatic mutual recognition of DVOs made across Australia.
These changes represent the next stage of legislative reform to implement Recommendation 140 in the Taskforce's report, and build on priority amendments already enacted in 2015.
National Work: The Third Action Plan
The Third Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022 was launched at the COAG National Summit on Reducing Violence Against Women and Children on 28 October 2016. The Third Action Plan represents the halfway-point of the National Plan and builds on the work undertaken in the First and Second Action Plans to help keep women and children safe. The Third Action Plan will help improve the outcomes for the future generations of women and their children. It sets out an ambitious agenda for achieving change focusing on:
- Prevention and early intervention;
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their children;
- Greater support and choice;
- Sexual violence;
- Responding to children living with violence; and
- Keeping perpetrators accountable across all systems.
National Work: National Outcome Standards for Perpetrator Intervention (NOSPI)
The Law Crime and Community Safety Council considered and approved the proposed performance measures for the National Outcome Standards for Perpetrator Intervention (NOSPI) on 21 October 2016. Queensland Government officials worked effectively with other state and territory counterparts to establish the final suite of 22 measures, which will best reflect the quality of perpetrator interventions across the country. Work will begin soon on a national stocktake to establish data availability across jurisdictions and their ability to report against the measures. A strong focus will be placed on ensuring minimum resource and reporting implications.
The 2016-17 State Budget provided $8.68 million over four years (including capital funding of $4.2 million) to establish new crisis shelters in Charters Towers and Roma. DCCSDS has recently been working jointly with the Department of Housing and Public Works (DHPW) and local stakeholders to co-design the service model and accommodation requirements for these new shelters. The department will soon be undertaking a procurement process for services for both new shelters.
In response to Recommendation 85 (a) of the 2015 Not Now, Not Ever: Putting an End to Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland report, the transition of administration of funding for women’s shelters from DHPW to DCCSDS has been implemented. Under the new arrangements, responsibility for the procurement, commissioning, contract management and funding administration of homelessness funding for support services for women and children escaping domestic and family violence (accommodation and non-accommodation services) has transitioned to DCCSDS.
The OFWDVR is working closely with regional staff and DHPW to implement these changes and to ensure the transition is smooth for service providers.
New Funding for Domestic and Family Violence Services
On 2 June 2016, DCCSDS provided new funding totalling $9,526,199 over five years for new or enhanced domestic and family violence services in the Greater Townsville, Mackay, Moreton Bay, Caboolture, Brisbane, Beaudesert, Beenleigh, Ipswich/Goodna and Ripley/Somerset commencing in October 2016.
This investment includes funding for new perpetrator intervention programs in Mackay and Moreton Bay, supporting the Queensland Government’s aims to increase access to perpetrator intervention initiatives in accordance with recommendation 80 of the Not Now, Not Ever report. The Moreton Bay program includes funds for the successful organisation to provide programs to support Walking with Dads, a new intervention model targeting fathers and father figures subject to the statutory child protection system who have exposed their children to domestic and family violence.
Queensland’s Integrated Responses to Domestic and Family Violence
Work is underway to develop the integrated response to domestic and family violence recommended by the Not Now, Not Ever report. A co-design process is underway in Logan-Beenleigh to develop a place-based model supported by a local integration manager. Co-design processes for Cherbourg and Mount Isa will be underway soon.
Alongside these local projects, Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety (ANROWS) has been engaged to develop supporting tools for each trial location. To inform this process, ANROWS recently completed consultation workshops in Brisbane, Logan-Beenleigh, Maryborough, Mt Isa and Cairns.
Amendments to the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012, passed by Parliament on 11 October 2016, will support integrated responses to domestic and family violence by enabling information sharing between domestic and family violence services and prescribed entities to assess and manage risk.
One Million Stars to End Violence
DCCSDS and the Department of Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games partnered to be a Star Weave Community, with the aim of contributing 10,000 stars by July 2017 to the One Million Stars to End Violence project.
The project invites communities from across the globe to help weave one million stars to shine a light on a campaign to end violence in the community and create a spectacular art installation for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Thanks to the efforts of staff, their families and friends, DCCSDS has so far contributed more than 17,000 stars toward the project.
For information on how to get involved with the project, and to find videos and instructions on how to make your own star, visit the One Million Stars to End Violence project website.
Women’s Infolink: linking women to government and community services
The Office for Women responds to women’s issues, queries and problems providing confidential support and referral options through our telephone and online services.
- Phone: 1800 177 577 (Free-call state wide service) Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm
- Email: email@example.com
Contact details for government and community services relevant to Queensland women and girls are available at ‘Find a service’ . You can search for services in your region across a wide range of categories.
Additional information on services for Queensland women is available on our website.