Violence mars festive time

January 12, 2018

A victim of domestic violence in Echuca on 6 November 2015.

DOMESTIC violence incidents have kept police and support services busy in the past month.

Campaspe police Acting Inspector Craig Gaffee said although he did not have figures, police resources were often tied up with family violence cases over the Christmas period.

‘‘Intelligence shows that December and January are particularly prevalent times for family violence,’’ he said.

‘‘This could be due to increased stress levels over the holiday period, warmer weather and increased alcohol consumption.’’

Centre for Non-Violence client services general manager Yvette Jaczina said since December 1, 18 new clients had accessed its services.

‘‘We have provided support to over 50 women during this period, plus court support for around 12 women,’’ she said.

‘‘The figures for support overall are higher than for this time last year but again we would attribute that to our increased presence in Campaspe.’’

Ms Jaczina said CNV was pleased to see the continued rollout of the recommendations from the Royal Commission into Family Violence.

‘‘The increase in service capacity in Campaspe has been part of that and we expect to see further changes in 2018, including initiatives that strengthen how the systems responding to family violence work together,’’ she said.

‘‘We are pleased to see a strengthened service response and are also committed to working with groups such as the Campaspe Family Violence Action Group toward initiatives that work to prevent family violence by addressing gender inequality and continuing to raise awareness about the gender dynamics of family violence and the causes of family violence.’’

Insp. Gaffee said this year, the Bendigo-based Family Violence Unit would transition to a Family Violence Investigation Unit.

‘‘The FVIU will have dedicated detectives and intelligence practitioners as part of the team,’’ he said.

‘‘This upgraded unit will build on the work already ongoing in the Campaspe area by the FVU and bring a specialist response to high risk, repeat, escalating or cold case family violence crime.’’

He encouraged people affected by family violence to come to the police station or a support service for help.

■You can call the Women’s Domestic Violence Crisis Service on 1800015188, National Sexual Assault, Family and Domestic Violence Counselling Line on 1800737732 and the CNV on 1800884038.

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