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New strategies needed to stop domestic violence | InSight+

[inSight+ extract]

No single strategy will stop domestic violence. We must urgently invest in a sustainable health system response with an understanding of different patterns of abuse and coercive control.

The need for broader views about prevention of violence against women in Australia has been advocated for recently in the media.

I have listened to thousands of women survivors in my career as a researcher and a GP. What they have taught me is that domestic violence is not a single phenomenon with a simple solution. Domestic violence is not physical violence alone, it is a pattern of behaviours of emotional, physical and sexual abuse from their male partner that controls and instils fear. It causes major ill health for women and children in Australia. To stop domestic violence deaths requires understanding and responding to different patterns of abuse and coercive control.

If we look at patterns of deaths from domestic violence, we can see in the analyses of 199 incidents of male-perpetrated homicide by Hayley Boxall and colleagues that:

  • 33% were fixated threat offenders (typically high functioning, controlling, middle-class men, with low levels of past criminal justice contact);
  • 40% were persistent and disorderly offenders (of these, half were Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples; had complex histories of trauma and abuse, concurrent mental and physical health problems and heavy alcohol use, frequent criminal justice contact); and
  • 11% were deterioration/acute stressor offenders (usually older men with chronic physical and mental health concerns, rarely had previous violence histories).

Each of these perpetrator types have different risk factors, life histories and trajectories over time, and are likely to need different evidence-based interventions. Three-quarters of these intimate partner homicide offenders had at least one emotional, mental or physical health condition during their lifetime. In addition, a deep cultural understanding of the systemic factors underlying homicides in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples is necessary for prevention in this population.

Continue Reading the full article at inSight+ >>



20 May2024



(Credits: Article/ Image – inSight+ &






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