Minister for Women
Living Free From Violence Is Everyone’s Right – Taking Action To Prevent It Is Everyone’s Responsibility
10 October, 2016

In the first agreement of its kind in the nation, White Ribbon Australia and Rotary Tasmania have signed a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) to show their joint commitment to take action and work together to end violence against women.

The MOU highlights the vision that all women have the right to live safely, free from violence and abuse, while it also acknowledges that it is a serious and prevalent issue in Tasmania.

The greater the promotion of respect in relationships, the more we will prevent violence against women.

The Hodgman Liberal Government has acknowledged the impact of domestic violence and made a $26 million commitment to address it through the Safe Homes, Safe Families: Tasmania’s Family Violence Action Plan 2015-2020.

This action plan and funding builds on the work and investment the government is already doing in this area and complements what is happening at a national level, as well as organisations like White Ribbon Australia and Our Watch.

The partnership between White Ribbon Australia and Rotary Tasmania demonstrates that organisations can have an active role in preventing violence by working with their staff, members and networks throughout the community.

Amongst a range of measures the MOU will see all 50 Tasmanian Rotary clubs take the White Ribbon Oath: I will stand up, speak out and act to prevent men’s violence against women, with members offered access to training to better understand how to address this social ill.

All forms of violence are wrong regardless of the gender of the perpetrator and we know men can be victims too.

However a sad fact is that one in three women has experienced physical violence since the age of 15 and almost one in five, sexual violence.

On top of this, on average one woman is killed every week by her partner.

These are shocking statistics but ones which should not be disregarded as just numbers – they are a mother, sister, friend or someone you know.

To ignore violence against women would be the worst thing, by acknowledging it we are working to see it stop.

To truly do that, we need a whole-of-community response and this partnership is a step in the right direction.