The Facts and Figures

1 Woman

per week is murdered by her current or former partner

Women are 5 times more likely

more likely than men to require medical attention or hospitalisation as a result of intimate partner violence

1 in 3

Australian women has experienced physical violence

What is family Violence?

According to the law, family violence can involve partners, siblings, parents, children and people who are related in other ways. Violence can happen in different kinds of families and different kinds of family situations. Some examples include:

A same sex partner who is violent
Young people who are are being violent towards their parents or their siblings
Elder abuse
carers who are violent towards those who they are caring for

Family violence is a crime

Family violence is a crime. It is a violation of human rights. The law is clear:

You do not lose your rights because you marry or are in a relationship
Family violence is a crime

All states and territories have laws to protect women and children from family violence and governments fund services to provide resources and support.

Violence is any behaviour that makes you feel scared, sad, isolated, worthless or disconnected from your family, community or your mob. Violence is also behaviour that threatens safety, security and wellbeing of your children

Describing family violence

Physical – hitting, punching, slapping, pushing and yelling
Sexual – rape or forcing you to have sex, forcing you to do sexual acts you don’t want to do, unwanted sexual comments or touching
Emotional or psychological – putting you down, making you feel stupid, swearing at you and calling you names
Controlling – stopping you from being with your family or friends, or participating in community or religious and cultural events
Economic – keeping money from you, not allowing you to have money of your own.
Coercive – using power over you to get you to do the things you don’t want to do


Victims of family violence are predominantly women and children, males can also be victims, particularly as children and in their older years.

Women are more likely to:

Experience violence from a male member in the home
Live in fear before, during and after separation.

Men are more likely to:

Inflict severe injury as a result of attempts to control, coerce, intimidate and dominate others.
Experience violence in public rather than in the home.
Men who have experienced violence from a known person were more likely to have experienced violence by a known male than a known female.

Where can you find help?

In an emergency of if you are in danger right now

Call emergency services on 000

Related Information

SAFE STEPS – 1800 015 188 For confidential support and information call the family response line 24/7

MENS REFERRAL SERVICE (MRS) – 1300 766 491 MRS provides anonymous and confidential telephone counselling, information and referrals to men to help them take action to stop using violent and controlling behaviour
1800 RESPECT – 1800 737 732 The national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service. 24/7 phone and online services.
KIDS HELPLINE – Kids helpline is a counselling service for Australian children and young people aged between 5 and 25 years. 24/7 phone and online services