FAMILY VIOLENCE PRIMARY PREVENTION: Building a knowledge base and identifying gaps for all manifestations of family violence

WHAT: The Victorian Royal Commission into Family Violence identified several communities whose experiences of family violence are unique. In response, The Equality Institute was commissioned by the Victorian Government to conduct a comprehensive literature review and analysis on different manifestations of family violence, and on proven and promising practices for primary prevention. The project was a comprehensive literature review of 11 different communities throughout Australia, highlighting the diversity of experiences among these different groups and the different combinations and types of drivers and reinforcing factors in their experiences of violence.

WHO: The communities included Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, LGBTQI, children (as independent victims), male victims, rural, regional and remote communities, faith communities, sex workers, people with disabilities, women in prison, CALD communities and older people. The impact of the project extends to all of Victoria, in particular, to those targeted communities.

HOW: The project included scoping and analysis of available literature. The final report and policy recommendations were developed through consultation with policy-makers and interest groups, and provide a key evidence base for the development of an innovative policy framework within Australia.

WHY: Most of the existing evidence and primary prevention efforts in Australia are focused on intimate partner violence and sexual violence, perpetrated by men against women. This report was important because it worked to identify the additional and intersecting factors that contribute to experiences of family violence among these specific communities. The report builds an evidence base on what works to prevent family violence within different groups, and identifies key gaps in the evidence that pose substantive barriers in the prevention of family violence. Ultimately, this is crucial in order to develop effective strategies to address different forms of family violence, not only in Victoria but across Australia and the world.