What is family violence?

Family violence is a set or pattern of behaviours in which someone seeks power and control over you, causing you to feel threatened, worthless or fearful. Family violence can take many forms:

  • It can be physical, psychological and emotional, economic, social, sexual or spiritual
  • It can include behaviour that is violent, threatening, controlling, intimidating and isolating
  • It can affect people from all ages, social, cultural and religious backgrounds, and people with a disability
  • It can occur between family members, parents and children, against elders, against pets, in marriages, de-facto relationships, same sex relationships, couples who are separated or divorced, and even within shared households
  • In most cases, it is committed by men against a female partner or ex-partner.

Living with family violence is a confronting and often confusing experience. These questions may help you to understand whether you are experiencing family violence.

Is this person:

  • Making you feel scared or afraid?
  • Yelling at you or saying bad things to you?
  • Putting you down?
  • Hitting, punching or pushing you?
  • Stopping you from seeing your family or friends?
  • Not giving you something you need like medication or food?
  • Controlling your money against your will?
  • Threatening to take or harm your children?
  • Harming or threatening to harm your pets?
  • Not letting you have your own belief system?

Family violence is a criminal offence. Unfortunately, one in four women in Australia have experienced violence by a partner they may or may not have been living with. (Source: ANROWS 2015)

For services, programs and responses to family violence in CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) communities, contact InTouch Multicultural Centre against Family Violence on 1800 755 988 (Monday to Friday, 10.00am – 4.00pm).  EDVOS also has access to free interpreter services if required.

What to do if you need help:

If you are in immediate danger call 000

Contact EDVOS on 03 9259 4200 between 9am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 9am – 5pm Saturday

Contact Safe Steps on 1800 015 188 24 hours per day or visit: safesteps.org.au

Tell someone you can trust – family, friends, neighbours or your doctor