Australia Hates DV

The first caveat to this post should be that I got the story off Buzzfeed -- which is usually more an entertainment website full of random facts, cute animals, and ridiculous quizzes I may take to mindless entertain myself and distract myself from the day to day trials and tribulations.

Second, I would like to assume that most countries hate DV -- but sadly, after a decade in practice specializing in Domestic Violence, even in our own country, despite being a leader of the free world and progression, DV is sadly still misunderstood, minimized, and not really considered "that big a deal."

Our country has tried to combat DV with VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) in 1996, creating state and federal legislation to combat DV on multiple levels. In family law, criminal law, housing and health.

It tickles me pink to see other countries taking such a public stand against a world epidemic (the CDC in the US has declared domestic violence or intimate partner violence, a multi-billion dollar costly epidemic).

Australia is using the $100 million to train emergency responders, to provide housing and crisis intervention, to provide additional resources for male victims, and more.

I have seen first hand what a lack of resources can do to a survivor and his/her family -- lack of housing either keeps a surivor and children homeless or in the home, subjected to further abuse. Lack of access to legal resources (as Congress makes more and more cuts to legal aid despite every study showing that for every $1 spent on legal aid, $3-5 is saved in other areas like welfare, medical costs, lost wages) keeps survivors from exercising rights, getting child or spousal support, getting restraining orders or staying safe.

Seeing other countries spending serious money to combat the problem means we, as a global community, are taking the epidemic of DV seriously and that's a good thing.

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