Chance to save lives

The Advertiser - - LETTERS -

WOMEN’S safety ser­vices in this state keep a data­base which tracks se­rial abusers.

At last count, it held the names of more than 400 men who had been re­ported as hurt­ing mul­ti­ple women or chil­dren.

They are men who go from one re­la­tion­ship to the next, per­pet­u­at­ing, and of­ten es­ca­lat­ing, the same abu­sive be­hav­iour.

When one wo­man gath­ers the courage to leave, or ex­treme vi­o­lence leaves her no choice, these men just move on to an­other un­sus­pect­ing vic­tim.

From Oc­to­ber, women – and it is still women who are most af­fected by do­mes­tic vi­o­lence – will be able to ask po­lice about the prior his­tory of their part­ner.

Be­fore physical vi­o­lence rears its ugly head there are usu­ally red flags, in­di­ca­tors of con­trol­ling or abu­sive ten­den­cies.

If a wo­man, or her rel­a­tive or friend, has con­cerns that such be­hav­iour could worsen, the scheme is an op­por­tu­nity to seek help early.

It can be dif­fi­cult to leave a re­la­tion­ship, even an abu­sive one, but the hope is that know­ing the risk of harm they face will make choos­ing safety eas­ier.

It could well save a life.

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