News - Domestic Violence

Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said that everyone has a right to feel safe in their homes.  Despite efforts to reduce domestic and family violence, on average two women die in Australia each week at the hands of a violent partner, husband or father”.

Domestic violence is a violation of human rights.  It involves violent, abusive or intimidating behaviour carried out by an adult against a partner or former partner to control and dominate that person. 

Domestic violence causes fear, physical and/or psychological harm.  Living with domestic violence has a profound effect upon children and young people and may constitute a form of child abuse. 

Domestic violence can include: 

  • Physical assault (including punching, hitting, kicking, pushing, slapping, choking or the use of weapons);
  • Sexual assault (being forced to have sex or participate in sexual activities);
  • Emotional abuse (making you feel worthless, criticising your personality, your looks, the way you dress, constantly putting you down, threatening to hurt you, your children or your pets);
  • Verbal abuse (including yelling, shouting, name-calling and swearing at you);
  • Social abuse (being stopped from seeing friends and family, isolating you socially or geographically);
  • Damaging property such as furniture, the house or pets in order to threaten or intimidate you;
  • Stalking or monitoring every move;
  • Psychological abuse and “crazy making”.  This can include:
    • Denying that the abusive behaviour occurred;
    • Blaming the person being abused for their behaviour;
    • Telling the person being abused that they have mental health problems or anxiety disorders;
    • Manipulating or deliberately twisting reality; and
    • Moving personal belongings or furniture and then denying that this has been done (sometimes this is called “Gas Lighting” from the movie “Gas Light”).
  • Legal abuse, such as exploiting the Family Law system to intimidate, exhaust, exploit or disempower someone;
  • Financial abuse (taking control of the money, not giving you enough money to survive on, forcing you to hand over your money, not letting you to have a say in how it is spent).

People who use domestic violence in their relationships break the law.  Domestic Violence Protection Orders, criminal charges, jail and fines can all result from this behaviour.  

What is a Domestic Violence Order?

A Domestic Violence Order is a civil order made by a Court that imposes conditions to protect a person from future domestic violence.

For some people, domestic violence may be perceived as a private family issue – but is unfortunately a wide reaching community issue… affecting the physical health and emotional wellbeing, the learning capacity and productivity and ability to earn a living for thousands of men, women and children across Queensland every day.  


For more information and advice contact: 

  • Jennifer Hartley – Senior Associate.