The statistics are frightening!
It’s so easy to just sail along in life and be oblivious to what’s happening around us. I have to say that last week I realised that I’m no better than anyone else in that, and I too am guilty of missing the point sometimes.
The issue in this instance is domestic violence.
Orange City Life is regularly receiving press releases etc. about domestic violence issues, along with many others about other growing social problems like mental health, homelessness, everything cancer and so on. In my case, I’ve decided to filter many of these because I felt our magazine was starting to become overrun with bad news.
That said, I was stopped in my tracks last week when I read some statistics on domestic violence in a political brochure. Before I give you these, let me also tell you that domestic violence is described as “a global public health problem of epidemic proportions.” If after reading that you’re thinking “yeah, right….”, hold that thought until you read this.
These are from Domestic Violence Statistics in Australia from the Australian Bureau of Statistics and other credible sources.
Be prepared to be stopped in your tracks like me –
On average, one woman a week is murdered by her current or former partner.
1 in 4 women have experienced emotional abuse by a current or former partner since the age of 15.
1 in 5 women have experienced sexual violence since the age of 15.
85% of Australian women have been sexually harassed.
Almost 40% of women continued to experience violence from their partner while temporarily separated.
1 in 6 women have experienced stalking since the age of 15.
Statistics indicate that domestic violence rates are higher in rural and regional NSW.
My very first thought, having read that was, is that possible? Can men possibly be as bad as these statistics suggest? If yes, which clearly is the case, and as a man, I don’t know what to say to that. I feel ashamed to know that so many men are letting the team down with such disgraceful behaviour. I’m truly stuck for the right words to say.
Of course, about here, most commentators would ask “what are we going to do about it?”
I think it’s way past that. We need to start turning this around yesterday! Women deserve far better from us blokes and I for one will be making my feelings heard longer and louder from here on.
Folks, this is a problem that as a community we can actually do something about, and being passive about it won’t achieve anything worthwhile.
I’m open to ideas but let me give you one thing you can do in the immediate future to start the ball rolling.
We have a Federal Election coming up on May 18. That gives us a chance to really rattle the cages of candidates and make our feelings known on this extremely frightening and crucial issue. Let’s do it!
At the very least, consider candidates who have domestic violence high on their “must address” priority list.