Adolescent family violence in Australia: A national study of prevalence, use of and exposure to violence, and support needs for young people
There is increasing recognition across Australia and internationally of the significant harms and impacts of adolescent family violence (AFV), also known as adolescent violence in the home (AVITH). AFV refers to the use of family violence (including physical, emotional, psychological, verbal, financial and/or sexual abuse) by a young person against their parent, carer, sibling or other family member within the home (Royal Commission into Family Violence, 2016).
While research in this area has developed in recent years, there remain significant gaps in current understanding of this form of family violence. Specifically, there is no research within Australia or internationally that examines the prevalence and nature of, and responses to, AFV from the perspective of young people.
This project aimed to:
- create a robust prevalence database on the use of family violence by young people within the home, including among marginalised community groups
- understand the nature of family violence used by young people within the home
- examine the degree to which young people who use violence within the home have been exposed to different forms of family violence throughout childhood
- generate new insights and recommendations into support needs for young people using family violence.
This project conducted a prevalence survey of 5,000 young Australians aged 16 to 20 years. The survey instrument was designed to:
- create a robust dataset for measuring the prevalence of AFV in Australia
- facilitate better understanding of AFV alongside an understanding of DFV exposure during childhood
- generate new knowledge on current service options and support needs among this cohort.
The survey consisted of a series of demographic, quantitative and qualitative questions.
The in-depth evidence gained on the nature of violence used by young people within the home as well as exposure to DFV during childhood ensures that policymakers across Australia have the evidence required to design tailored, client-centred responses to different communities of young people using and exposed to DFV. This evidence has been contextualised with an understanding of young people’s experiences accessing supports and their expressed service needs. Findings are applicable to policy decisions on the number and type of support services needed and allocation of resources for responding to AFV.
Adolescent family violence in Australia: A national study of prevalence, history of childhood victimisation and impactsView more
Adolescent family violence in Australia: A national study of service and support needs for young people who use family violenceView more
Associate 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
Professor JaneMaree Maher, Professor of Sociology, Monash University
Hayley Boxall, Research Manager, Violence against Women and Children Research Program, Australian Institute of Criminology
Professor Steven Robert, Professor of Education and Social Justice, Monash University
Dr Kathryn Benier, Lecturer in Criminology, Monash University
This project will be supported by an expert advisory board, including current Commissioners for Children and Young People, advocates for children and young people, and international experts.
This project is funded by Australian Commonwealth, state and territory governments under ANROWS’s 2020–2022 Core Grant round.
Adolescent family violence in Australia:
A national study of prevalence, use of and exposure to violence, and support needs for young people
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