Let’s get scourge of DV out in open
TERRITORY crime statistics released on Friday contain an alarmingly high number of domestic violence cases. On a midweek night in Darwin alone, police were called to 29 incidents of domestic violence, and on any given night, police say the crime of domestic violence carries the heaviest workload for the force.
In releasing the crime figures, NT Police Commander Danny Bacon said family violence “is the primary crime type that’s in our community today”.
The latest data also showed domestic violence-related assaults in Alice Springs rose 65 per cent in the 12 months to the end of December.
Alcohol-related assaults in Alice Springs were up 68 per cent in the same period.
Other NT government data shows Aboriginal women are 40 times more likely to be hospitalised as a result of sexual and family violence, while 91 per cent of the Territory’s sexual assault victims are Aboriginal women and girls.
Commander Bacon said police were working hard to reduce the number of domestic violence cases in the Territory and Strike Force Lyra that was dedicated to domestic violence was helping to “increase co-ordination … and talking about domestic violence as well, so the information is out there”.
The tragic statistics come as the Territory government appoints its first Aboriginal Advisory Board on domestic, family and sexual violence.
The new board will be chaired by Lauren Peric and report to Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence Minister Kate Worden.
The eight other members hail from Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, Katherine, Ngukurr and Galiwinku and include Linda Turner, Rhoda Dhurrkay, Daphne Daniels, Connie Shaw, Anthony Castro, Michael Torres, Byron May and Kim Mulholland.
Domestic violence is often seen as a hidden or secret crime, getting the issue out in the open, will hopefully ensure victims get the help they need, and that support agencies are properly resourced throughout the Territory.