What you can do
We all have a role to play in changing the culture and attitudes that underpin violence in our communities.
Long-held, entrenched beliefs about gender, masculinity, power and relationships are directly related to domestic and family violence and violence against women more broadly.
Here are some ways you could take action in your community:
- Be a source of support to someone experiencing abuse.
- Learn about the various forms of domestic and family violence, the signs of abuse and where to get help.
- If someone you know is being violent or controlling, contact your local domestic violence service for advice on the best course of action to minimise the risk of violence to the victim and to yourself. Don’t forget to call the police on 000 if you think someone is at risk of immediate harm.
- Raise awareness about domestic violence among your family and friends and your community networks.
- Promote gender equality in your community, religious or sporting clubs – there is a strong link between gender equality and violence against women.
- Organise a community event to raise awareness about the issue and inform people about where to get help.
- Host a fundraising event for a local domestic violence support service.
- Support local events and activities during Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month in May. Find out what’s happening near you.
- Model appropriate behaviour and challenge your family, friends or colleagues when they make sexist remarks, trivialise violence or blame the victim.
- Hold the people you know accountable for violent and unacceptable behaviour—don’t turn a blind eye.
- Journalists can visit Our Watch to become familiar with their guidelines on how to report on domestic violence. Journalists play an important role in raising awareness, changing community attitudes and reinforcing the message that violence is never acceptable.
- If you are an employer, provide your staff with information about the issue and where to access help. Introduce workplace policies about how to support employees affected by domestic violence. The Public Service Commission has developed a whole-of-government domestic and family violence workplace support package which is available for local government, business and non-government organisations to tailor to suit the needs of their workplace.
- Promote gender equality in the workplace and create a culture where employees feel confident to do something if they see or hear sexism, harassment, discrimination or violence at work.
- Donate your time, goods or money to help a local domestic violence service.