NSW Department of Communities and Justice: Draft NSW Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027 and draft NSW Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027
This submission responds to the NSW Department of Communities and Justice’s draft Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027 and draft Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027. The submission draws on ANROWS and other peer-reviewed evidence to identify opportunities to strengthen the draft plans.
The NSW Department of Communities and Justice welcomed submissions on the draft Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027 and draft Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027, which were developed alongside each other and intended to be complementary. ANROWS provided a submission addressing both draft plans.
In overall comments about the draft plans, ANROWS noted that they are underpinned by a strong guiding framework that will support a coherent and clear plan of activity as well as robust accountability and evaluation mechanisms. ANROWS recommended that the NSW Government act on previous recommendations on Aboriginal self-determination, and highlighted opportunities for further collaboration between the NSW Government, ANROWS and the Healing Foundation, including in workforce capacity-building and research.
The submission outlines opportunities to strengthen both draft plans, including choosing an outcome-focused title for each plan, using consistent language when referring to a public health approach, supporting the wellbeing and recovery of children and young people who have experienced trauma to prevent future sexual violence offending, and consistently including references.
To strengthen the draft Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027, ANROWS suggested:
- Removing coercive control from the list of tactics of domestic and family violence behaviours, to reflect the understanding that coercive control is the overarching context for domestic and family violence
- Clarifying the definition of relevant relationships
- Clarifying or extending the draft plan to include non-statutory child protection agencies
- Including actions on adolescent violence in the home
- Considering relevant evidence on the role of primary healthcare providers in responding to the least visible offenders
- Using the ANROWS National Risk Assessment Principles when reviewing current assessment tools
- Ensuring that the draft plan includes the development of disability literacy among service providers, including in work with children
- Including actions focused on the effective identification of the person most in need of protection
- Ensuring that the plan features children and young people as victims and survivors in their own right in more than principle alone
- Including, expanding and evaluating work on three ANROWS projects in which New South Wales has been an active participant and collaborator: The PATRICIA Project: Pathways And Research In Collaborative Inter-Agency working, Safe and Together Addressing ComplexitY focusing on children, and Invisible practices: Intervention with fathers who use violence.
To strengthen the draft Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027, ANROWS suggested:
- Updating references relating to prevalence rates of sexual violence
- Including sexual violence as a health risk in policies and supporting greater access to health services for victims and survivors
- Including recognition of achievements outside of government
- Ensuring outcomes are clear to ensure that progress and success can be measured.
The NSW Government has since released the final NSW Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027 and NSW Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027.
Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety. (2022). Re: Draft NSW Domestic and Family Violence Plan 2022–2027 and draft NSW Sexual Violence Plan 2022–2027 [Submission]. ANROWS.