Indigenous group targets domestic violence

Shannon Fentiman says women are over-represented in domestic and family violence statistics.
Shannon Fentiman says women are over-represented in domestic and family violence statistics.

A taskforce to address domestic and family violence in Indigenous communities has met with Queensland's attorney-general to discuss the importance of "cultural healing".

In a meeting with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Group on Tuesday, culturally appropriate advice was submitted to address and prevent domestic and family violence (DFV) in First Nations communities.

Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman says the taskforce is a chance to work with experts within Indigenous communities and provide appropriate DFV support.

"The stark reality is that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are over-represented in domestic and family violence statistics," Ms Fentiman said.

One of the members, Gangaalu/Bitjarra woman Lynette Anderson, noted the importance of cultural healing when it comes to addressing DFV in Indigenous communities, especially for regional and rural communities.

"When we talk about perpetrators and violence, we don't get a response, but when we talk about cultural healing, we have more success in working in this space with our mob," said Ms Anderson.

Along with DFV, the issue of coercive control was also raised with concerns as to how new legislation could have unintended consequences on First Nation women.

Ms Fentiman raised the Women's Safety and Justice Taskforce and work they're undertaking in regards to coercive control, adding she would organise a special briefing for this group from the taskforce.

The Prevention Group was established following the conclusion of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Group that supported the former Domestic and Family Violence Implementation Council.

It will oversee addressing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander DFV, including providing oversight and support for implementation of Queensland's Framework for Action

It is part of a $138 million budget commitment by the state government to domestic, family and sexual violence, including counselling and crisis responses across Queensland.

The budget also includes $3.5 million to enhance the capability of Community Justice Groups in 18 Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander communities.

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Australian Associated Press