Webinar: Adolescent violence in the home – Prevalence, service responses and the intersection with disability
Adolescent violence in the home (AVITH) is commonly described as a pattern of violent or abusive behaviour used by an adolescent within their family. Adolescents who use violence are often victims and survivors of violence themselves.
Disclaimer: ANROWS webinars bring together a diverse range of speakers on a particular topic, informed by the evidence base, lived expertise, and policy and practice knowledge. The views expressed by speakers or other third parties in ANROWS webinars and any subsequent materials are those of the speaker or third party and not, necessarily, of ANROWS.
In Australia there is limited research into AVITH, but ANROWS’s most recent grant round enabled a number of research teams to design and carry out projects to address this evidence gap, and to understand how policies and services can be best delivered to meet the needs of young people who use violence.
This webinar will begin with three evidence presentations on the latest research on AVITH, followed by a panel discussion with youth advocates, policymakers, sector experts and practitioners across the youth and legal sectors. It will focus on the prevalence and nature of AVITH; the intersection of AVITH and young people with disability; how services could use a collaborative response to support young people and families experiencing AVITH; and, crucially, the support needs that young people themselves have identified.
This webinar will be facilitated by Michele Robinson (Director, Evidence to Action, ANROWS) with:
- Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon, Director, Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre, Monash University
- Professor Silke Meyer, Leneen Forde Chair of Child and Family Research, Griffith University
- Associate Professor Georgina Sutherland, Deputy Head, Disability and Health Unit, Centre for Health Equity, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne
- Elena Campbell, Associate Director, Centre for Innovative Justice, RMIT University
- Meena Singh, Victorian Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People
- Brianna Waugh, CREATE Young Consultant
- Aly Butchers, Family Violence Lawyer, Youthlaw
- Silvana Arcifa, General Manager Family Services, Drummond Street Services
This webinar is designed for policymakers, practice designers, practitioners and researchers working in youth, disability, legal, and domestic and family violence services.
Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon
Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon is Director of the Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre, and a Professor of Social Sciences in the Faculty of Arts, Monash University. Kate is an internationally recognised scholar in domestic and family violence, femicide, responses to violence against women and children, and the impact of policy and practice reform. The findings of her research have been published in leading academic journals and books. Kate has advised on homicide law reform, family violence and youth justice reviews in several Australian and international jurisdictions. Her research has been cited by the High Court of Australia. In 2021 she was appointed Chair of Respect Victoria by the Victorian Government.
Professor Silke Meyer
Professor Silke Meyer is the Leneen Forde Chair in Child and Family Research in the School of Health Sciences and Social Work at Griffith University and an Adjunct Professor at the Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre. She is a criminologist and social worker by training, bringing practical and theoretical expertise to her research, teaching and advocacy. Her research centres on different aspects of domestic and family violence, including women and children’s safety, wellbeing and recovery, men’s accountability in their role as perpetrators and fathers, and the role of domestic and family violence-informed practice in wider service system responses.
Associate Professor Georgina Sutherland
Georgina Sutherland is Associate Professor in Disability and Health in the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health at the University of Melbourne. She is Deputy Head of the Disability and Health Unit and leads the Violence and Discrimination work stream. Georgina is an experienced public health researcher with a background in women’s health, public health law, gender equality and violence against women.
Georgina’s current research is focussed on understanding the complex interplay between gender, inequality and experiences of violence. She has extensive skills using mixed methods and co-designed approaches. She works closely with communities and individuals with lived expertise to amplify less heard voices in the co-production and translation of knowledge.
Elena is a lawyer, speechwriter and former political staffer who has worked in legal and social policy for 25 years. Elena’s expertise includes therapeutic justice, human rights, as well as the prevention and elimination of violence against women and children.
At the Centre for Innovative Justice, Elena oversees a program of research which focuses on family and sexual violence, as well as the way in which trauma can push women and children into contact with the criminal justice system. Elena has led projects for Government and courts to support the implementation of recommendations from Victoria’s Royal Commission into Family Violence.
Elena also leads a program of research focusing on young people’s use of violence at home, including the capacity of legal and service systems to respond to the complexity of need across families. In this capacity Elena has been Principal Chief Investigator in a series of ANROWS funded projects, including WRAP Around Families Experiencing AVITH: Towards a Collaborative Service Response. Elena has also been Chief Investigator in ANROWS projects focusing on interventions with adult perpetrators of family violence.
Meena Singh is the Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People in Victoria. She is a Yorta Yorta and Indian woman, born and living on the land of the Kulin Nations. Meena started her legal career with Victoria Legal Aid, where she practised in human rights and criminal law, and was also their inaugural Associate Director, Aboriginal Services. She has led legal services and programs at the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service and the Human Rights Law Centre, as well as consulting in training and organisational development across many organisations. She has a passion for centering the voices of people with lived experience and service design that promotes inclusion, connection and ultimately achieves social justice and equitable outcomes.
Brianna Waugh is a passionate and dedicated young consultant associated with the CREATE foundation. CREATE’s primary focus is advocating for the well-being of children and young individuals with out-of-home care experiences. As a young consultant with CREATE’s Speak Up program, Brianna’s journey of growth in advocacy is contributing to her ultimate aspiration to create meaningful change. Brianna is deeply committed to protecting vulnerable young people within the Australian system, ensuring they receive the safety and support they deserve.
Brianna is a passionate champion of human rights and promoting religious acceptance, rooted in her firm belief in inclusivity and understanding among diverse communities.
Aly Butchers is a senior lawyer at Youthlaw, a specialist community legal centre for young people under 25 in Victoria. Aly works in the Family Violence Program providing legal advice and court representation, and conducting casework. She works with children and young people who are experiencing or using violence in the home (AVITH), their intimate relationships or with other people in the community. She has also contributed to advocacy, sector training and community legal education to improve responsiveness and services to AVITH clients.
Aly has previously worked as a lawyer in the Aboriginal Families Practice at the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service, and works in private practice. She specialises in family law, child protection and family violence acting for both adult and child clients.
Silvana Arcifa has worked in a myriad of fields in NSW and Vic after studying psychology. Her career has included working in the areas of women’s health, multicultural services, AOD, mental health, family services and population health services – in clinical settings, in management or in government roles. Her strong social justice focus drives exploring the systems that hinder meeting the health and well-being needs of some of our society’s most vulnerable children, women, families and communities. Silvana has worked as the Drummond street General manager of family services – including the DS AVITH service – for almost 2 years. Apart from her social justice advocacy she has been a bee keeper for over 10 years and keeps sane by gardening her 33 fruit trees in a suburban backyard.