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​Progress in ending the violence

Issued: Wednesday, 23 December 2015

A new report shows the NSW Government is delivering a raft of innovative reforms aimed at changing the way the justice system tackles domestic violence and supports victims.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Justice and Police Troy Grant, Attorney General Gabrielle Upton and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Pru Goward today launched the NSW Domestic Violence Justice Strategy (DVJS) Bulletin which highlights the government’s key achievements for 2014-15 including on-the-spot Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders (ADVOs) and improving the way victims give evidence in court.

Mr Grant said it provides a snapshot of domestic violence data across the state and outlines the steps that have been taken in delivering better support for victims and tougher measures for perpetrators.

“Our important reforms are improving the way the justice system and police respond to domestic violence. This is not an overnight fix though and we’ll continue our work to combat this horrific crime that impacts all parts of the community,” Mr Grant said.

“There’s still more to be done next year including the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme pilot, implementing plain English ADVOs,” Ms Upton said.

“The NSW Government is leading the way with key reforms to prevent and respond to domestic and family violence,” Ms Goward said.

Key achievements in 2014-15 include:

  • Reducing the pressure on victims in court: allowing victims to give their main evidence via a pre-recorded video or audio statement;
  • Increasing immediate victims’ safety: allowing senior police to issue provisional ADVOs on the spot and to detain defendants for the purpose of serving the order immediately after the incident;
  • Improving coordination of support to victims: allowing greater information sharing between government agencies to facilitate victims’ access to support services and ensuring priority is given to those victims who are at greater risk of a serious threat of violence;
  • Increasing victims’ safety and support: expanding Safer Pathways, which provides a single coordinated response for victims and their children, to four more locations including Bankstown, Parramatta, Broken Hill and Tweed Heads on 1 July 2015;
  • Increase in the number of persons of interest charged: 43,814 charges against persons of interest (suspected offenders), up from 39,965 in 2013.

The DVJS is an operational framework led by NSW Justice designed to make victims safer, improve their confidence and participation in the justice system, hold perpetrators accountable and prevent domestic violence from re-occurring. The Strategy is closely linked with the NSW Government’s It Stops Here: Domestic and Family Violence Framework for Reform.

The DVJS is overseen by a Senior Executive Committee which includes NSW Justice, NSW Police, Corrective Services NSW, Legal Aid NSW, Department of Family and Community Services, Women NSW, NSW Health, the Judicial Commission and the Office of the Chief Magistrate.

For more information and to the 2014-15 Bulletin, go to: http://www.crimeprevention.nsw.gov.au/domesticviolence/Pages/DomesticViolenceJustice/Annual_Reports.aspx