STEPS to steer men away from using violence and controlling behaviour is available in a new best practice guide.
The booklet launched on Tuesday is the next step in the State Government campaign to end domestic violence.
Western Australia has the second highest rate of reported physical and sexual violence against women, with 44,000 cases on record this year compared to 40,000 calls for help last year.
In more than 65 per cent of cases, children are present or known to live with the victim or the perpetrator (Australian Bureau of Statistics).
Central Metropolitan Police District Superintendent Kim Massam described violence against women and children as a hideous scourge, when he spoke at the White Ribbon Day Midland March last week.
He said 80 per cent of reported cases occurred in the former East Metropolitan District incorporating Midland and Forrestfield.
The largest group of women who report experiencing violence are aged from 18 to 24 and more than half know their attacker.
WA Police say most perpetrators are known to police for multiple acts of violence or abuse, often against more than one victim.
Family and domestic violence estimates by Access Economics show the cost to the Australian economy to be $13.6 billion per year.
The costs are associated with workplace productivity losses and increased demands on health, welfare, housing, crisis and legal services.
Child Protection Minister Helen Morton said male behaviour change programs run by agencies were the target for the guide called Practice Standards for Perpetrator Intervention.
“With a number of agencies providing men’s behaviour programs, it is essential that all agencies provide consistent programs that meet best-practice requirements in this important area of work,” Mrs Morton said.
“The practice standards demonstrate how services should respond to men using violence, hold them accountable and take responsibility for their violent behaviour.”
Mrs Morton said the guide was one of 20 actions in the Freedom from Fear Action Plan and set out how to work collaboratively with partner agencies to assess, manage and monitor risk.
“For the first time, the practice standards will be applied consistently to voluntary and mandated programs funded by the Department for Child Protection and Family Support and the Department of Corrective Services.”
For more details and copies, visit www.cpfs.wa.gov.au
Women’s Domestic Violence: 1800 007 339
Men’s Domestic Violence: 1800 000 599
Parenting WA Line: 1800 654 432
Family Help Line: 1800 643 000
PROVIDING A SAFE PLACE FOR WOMEN
MIDLAND Women’s Health Care Place is among the support centres to provide a confidential health and wellbeing lifeline for women of all ages.
General Manager Patsy Molloy said her team seek to break down barriers that prevent women from accessing the range of support, from post-natal to bereavement counselling in a caring environment.
“Women can be honest about their concerns and be taken seriously,” Ms Molloy said.
“The problem is most women don’t consider their health above the needs of their family and we are here to assist women in all sorts of ways,” Ms Molloy said.
Depression and anxiety top the list of reported concerns of women with relationship and family issues who attend counselling sessions.
The centre has a clinical room with wheelchair access and a female nurse on site, access to translators, advocacy and many other support services.
Women can drop in any time and free crèche facilities are available at certain times.
Group activities include a mums and bubs program and a host of low cost workshops such as tai chi, pilates, pampering and meditation.
Some healthcare services such as Pap smears are free and bulk-billed through Medicare.
The non-government organisation was largely responsible for organising last Wednesday’s White Ribbon Day march in Midland.
Earlier this year, the centre celebrated 20 years of supporting the communities of the Eastern Metropolitan Region.