Take on social justice in bite-sized chunks
Welcome to the first “Monthly Byte” prepared by the Tasmanian Baptist Social Justice Taskforce. Each month there will be a “byte” addressing a critical social justice issue in our society.
In May, our focus is on Domestic and Family Violence. Kay Hunter from City Baptist in Launceston has provided some powerful information including data, a powerful video, a prayer and some suggested actions.
First some facts about: Domestic and Family Violence
In Australia on average, one woman a week is murdered by her current or former partner (last year 64 women died as a result of domestic violence).
Almost 40% of women continued to experience violence from their partner while temporarily separated.
Domestic and Family Violence is the leading cause of homelessness for women and children. In 2016-17, 34800 children, 72000 women and 9000 men seeking homeless services reported that Domestic and Family Violence caused or contributed to their homelessness.
Family Violence occurs across all ages and all socio economic and demographic groups.
Australian Police deal with domestic violence every 2 minutes.
These statistics are appalling and when you consider that the Police Commissioner in 2016 claimed that between 40-80% of domestic violence cases go unreported, this is not an issue that we can afford to ignore.
If you do not know someone who has been affected by family and domestic violence then I politely suggest you are living in some sort of unrealistic and idealistic bubble. I would also suggest that maybe you should be looking for it because the stats would suggest that it is all around us.
Check out this powerful video called Invisible Scars. It is an approximately 4-minute drama made in Sydney.
Action: What can we do?
Firstly, we can all build better relationships with those around us. Become the sort of friend people can trust enough to talk to about what is often felt to be a shameful experience in their life.
Women (and a fewer number of men) who experience domestic and family violence have learnt that often people will indicate by their attitude that the victim has done something to cause the violence. Or even if they have not caused it, they could just walk away from the perpetrator if they wanted to. So the ‘victims’ will not readily share their experiences.
Many deaths could have been avoided if those women who were murdered had a friend who accepted them unconditionally, and worked hard to put a protective frame work around them and their children.
Contact your local member:
Contact your local member and ask them what they do to ensure adequate funding for DV services, and what they do to ensure enough emergency housing for women and children fleeing Domestic and Family Violence.
You can also campaign for more affordable and public housing so these families can begin to rebuild shattered lives on the foundation of sustainable accommodation.
List of Tasmanian agencies addressing Domestic and Family Violence: Click HERE >>>
List of agencies and resources prepared by Tasmanian Anglicans: Click HERE >>>
For more info or to talk, email Kay Hunter: email@example.com
Our loving Father, we come to you with thanksgiving in our hearts because you made us and love us unconditionally. Father we ask that you will enable us to be messengers of hope and love for others.
Open our eyes that we may truly see the brokenness around us and recognise that we are part of this brokenness and restoration can only come through you. As you have reached out to us, help us to learn how to reach out to others. Give us a willingness to provide support and sanctuary to those who need it.
We ask these things Father in the name of your Son who gave His life that all may know what it is to be in right relationship with you and with each other. Amen