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Issued: Friday, 27 November 2015
For the first time in NSW, Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders (ADVOs) will be written in plain English so defendants have no excuses for not understanding the orders.
NSW Attorney General Gabrielle Upton, Deputy Premier and Minister for Justice and Police Troy Grant and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Pru Goward today announced the introduction of plain English ADVOs as part of the NSW Government’s commitment to end violence against women.
“There is never any excuse for breaching an ADVO, but we are now making these documents crystal clear so defendants are in no doubt of their obligations. They will be written in simple language tailored to the individual with none of the complex legal jargon you find in current ADVOs,” Ms Upton said.
Plain English ADVOs are designed to use language that a 13-year-old can understand. NSW courts and police will start rolling out the new improved ADVOs across the state over the next 12 months.
Mr Grant said domestic violence is one the most common issues frontline police have to deal with, and the plain English ADVO will make it easier and faster for police to process the orders and protect victims.
“We want people who are the subject of ADVO orders to know exactly what the consequences will be if they don’t comply - they can expect police to be knocking on their doors. Now the documents will spell out in plain English what the penalties for breaching an ADVO are, including up to two years in prison,” Mr Grant said.
Ms Goward said the NSW Government is committed to putting domestic violence perpetrators squarely in the frame.
“We are sending a clear message to perpetrators, if you don’t change, if you continue your violent behaviour against your partner we will target you,” Ms Goward said.
The new ADVOs are part of a raft of new measures the NSW Government has introduced this year to help stamp out domestic violence.
These initiatives include a Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme, to be piloted in 2016, the trial of dedicated Domestic Violence High Risk Offender Teams in the NSW Police Force and legislating to allow police to film a video or audio recording of a victim’s statement on the spot so it can be used as evidence in court.