AWAVA welcomes the opportunity to contribute a submission to the Senate inquiry into Domestic violence and gender inequality (Finance and Public Administration References Committee).
Violence against women is an extreme manifestation of gender inequality in society and a serious violation of human rights. It violates the rights to life, to equality, to liberty and security of person, to the highest standard attainable of physical and mental health, to just and favourable conditions of work and not to be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.
Violence against women is characterised by unequal gender dynamics, relations and control at an individual, community and institutional level. It is also exacerbated by, and intersects with other forms of marginalisation, discrimination and vulnerabilities and often has compounding impacts for, but not limited to, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD), women with disability, gender diverse, trans* and intersex people, older women, younger women, children, women in regional, rural and remote areas, and women in prison.
The Australian Government has recognised the extent of domestic, family and sexual violence as a problem in Australia. It has also recognised the fact that this violence is most commonly perpetrated by males against females and is a cause and consequence of gender inequality. AWAVA supports efforts to end violence against women and gender inequality in Australia’ however, we believe there needs to be a holistic approach that recognises and challenges the entrenched, ongoing and socially systemic problem that it is. To achieve this, policy development processes must ensure inclusivity and visibility, particularly for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, children, older and younger women, women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD), women with disability, women in regional, rural and remote areas, women in prison, and women in institutional settings.