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Violence against women and their children affects everybody. It impacts on the health, wellbeing and safety of a significant proportion of Australians throughout all states and territories and places an enormous burden on the nation’s economy across family and community services, health and hospitals, income-support and criminal justice systems.


News and events

ANROWS hosts events as part of its knowledge transfer and exchange work, including public lectures, workshops and research launches. Details of upcoming ANROWS activities and news are available from the list on the right.



ANROWS was established by the Commonwealth and all state and territory governments of Australia to produce, disseminate and assist in applying evidence for policy and practice addressing violence against women and their children.



To support the take-up of evidence, ANROWS offers a range of resources developed from research to support practitioners and policy-makers in delivering evidence-based interventions.


Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR): Input for the Special Rapporteur VAWG report on violence against women and children in custody cases

This submission provides brief insight into what Australian evidence tells us about the manifestations of domestic and family violence experienced by women and children, including the use of “parental alienation” and related concepts in child custody and access cases.  

It then outlines some examples of promising practice and remedies for victims and survivors, drawing upon both ANROWS research and other rigorous peer-reviewed Australian evidence. It uses the research reports “No straight lines”: Self-represented litigants in family law proceedings involving allegations about family violence and Domestic and family violence and parenting: Mixed method insights into impact and support needs: Final report, as well as findings from a 2022 study that ANROWS completed in partnership with the Australian Institute of Family Studies, which looked at compliance with family law parenting matters.

The key issues this submission addresses are:

  • parental alienation is still raised by fathers in Australia
  • victims and survivors and service providers report widespread systems abuse
  • family law must be connected to the wider response system
  • improving safety in the Family Court is vital for victims and survivors
  • separation is a period of heightened risk for intimate partner violence homicide.

Examples of promising practice this submission points to are:

  • preventing cross-examination of victims and survivors by perpetrators
  • supporting judges to use a range of safety provisions
  • additional family law changes, including a National Contravention List designed to triage and assess contravention matters, and the wider rollout of a risk screening, triage and case management system called Lighthouse.



Suggested citation

Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety. (2022). Input for the Special Rapporteur VAWG report on violence against women and children in custody cases [Submission]. ANROWS.

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