Domestic, family and intimate-partner violence

We understand the intricacies of domestic, family and intimate-partner violence and the many different ways it can present itself.

It is unacceptable and we work towards creating a safe environment for all. We address the drivers that perpetuate this kind of violence.

We recognise all the different forms of violence such as:

  • physical violence
  • sexual violence
  • emotional, psychological, financial violence and intimidation
  • intimate partner, domestic and family violence
  • verbal abuse.

These behaviours may occur in person, remotely, digitally or other cyber means.

The act of using physical force or violence by a person against another person may include:

  • an applied force or threats to apply force
  • fighting, biting, spitting, scratching and kicking
  • pushing, hitting, shoving, choking, tripping and grabbing
  • use or threatened use of a weapon (for example knives, guns and clubs).

Psychological violence can include a range of controlling behaviours and may occur face-to-face or via digital means.

Examples of psychological violence include:

  • being threatened with injury, abandonment or death
  • control of finances
  • isolation from family and friends and/ or confinement
  • intentionally frightening or continual humiliation
  • threats against children, family or pets
  • gaslighting that causes a person to doubt themselves, their memory or their sanity
  • any other treatment which may diminish the sense of:
    • identity
    • dignity
    • self-worth (such as put-downs, ridicule and incessant monitoring of an individual’s movements).

Family violence is a broader term than domestic violence. It refers to violence not only between intimate partners, but also violence between family members. Family violence happens in all kinds of relationships, including (but not limited to):

  • intimate: partners, lovers, husband and wife/ spouses, ex-partners
  • older people and their children (elder abuse)
  • other family members, including children and step-parents
  • parents and their children.

Family violence or abuse serves to establish and maintain power and control over another person (including children) and includes behaviours that cause physical, sexual or psychological harm to those within the family or relationship. Family violence encapsulates the broader issue of violence within extended families, kinship networks and community relationships, as well as intergenerational issues.

Examples include but are not limited to:

  • violent, intimidating or threatening behaviour
  • any form of behaviour that coerces or controls a family member or causes them to be fearful
  • physical, sexual, emotional, spiritual, psychological and financial abuse
  • any other treatment which may diminish the sense of identity, dignity and self-worth.

Support and resources

Internal support

  • Emergency: In an emergency ring 000 and then security 9479 2222
  • Safer Community: Provides advice, support and referrals on all forms of unacceptable behaviour including sexual assault and sexual harassment
  • Counselling Support: Provides counselling support on a range of issues that may be affecting a person’s wellbeing.
  • Use our Crisis Line for Out of hours Mental Health and Wellbeing Support. Phone: 1300 146 307 or text: 0488 884 100. This service operates 5.00 pm–9.00 am on weekdays and 24 hours during weekends and public holidays.
  • Family Violence [PDF 278KB] - A factsheet produced by our Safer Community team

External Support

  • Lifeline – For anyone experiencing a personal crisis, 24 hours a day 13 11 14.
  • Beyond Blue – 24/7 phone support, chat online service and resources for those needing support.
  • Headspace – free online and phone support and counselling to young people aged 12-25 years old and their families and friends.
  • Switchboard - for LGBTIQA+ specific support and referral.