Australian Bureau of Statistics

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4906.0 - Personal Safety, Australia, 2012  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/12/2013   
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Contents >> Experience of partner violence >> Actions taken in response to partner violence


ACTIONS TAKEN IN RESPONSE TO PARTNER VIOLENCE

The 2012 PSS collected information about a person's help seeking behaviours in relation to their experience of partner violence. This included data about who the respondent first told about the violence and who they had ever sought advice or support from about the violence by their partner. This included advice or support from: formal sources such as health professionals, support services, police (etc); as well as from informal sources such as a friend or family member (refer Endnote 1). The concept of "seeking advice or support" relates to all of the sources from whom a person had sought advice or support from about their violent relationship (refer Endnote 2). Whilst the data about the first person told provides information about who is most likely to be the first "point-of-reveal" for persons who are experiencing partner violence (including accidental reveals by the respondent).

Note that this data refers to the respondent's help seeking behaviours over the whole relationship with their current partner and/or most recently violent previous partner. This differs from data about actions taken in response to violence following a person's most recent incident of each type of violence (refer to the chapter on Selected Characteristics of different types of violence).


Whether ever told anyone about partner violence

Men were less likely than women to have ever told anyone about violence by a current partner. Men were also less likely than women to have ever told anyone about violence by a previous partner. Both men and women were more likely to reveal their experience of violence by a previous partner compared to violence by a current partner (Refer Table 23).

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED CURRENT PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never told anyone about the violence(a)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PREVIOUS PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never told anyone about the violence(a)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Most recently violent previous partner.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



Persons who had never told anyone about partner violence:


Current Partner
  • An estimated 64,700 men (54% of the 119,600 men who had experience current partner violence) had never told anyone about the violence by their current partner.
  • An estimated 60,800 women (26% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) had never told anyone about the violence by their current partner.

Previous Partner
  • An estimated 70,200 men (21% of the 336,600 men who had experience previous partner violence) had never told anyone about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
  • An estimated 85,300 women (6.7% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) had never told anyone about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
Persons who had told someone about partner violence:

Current Partner
  • An estimated 54,900 men (46% of the 119,600 men who had experienced current partner violence) had told someone about the violence by their current partner.
  • Of the estimated 176,300 women (74% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) who had told someone about the violence by their current partner, 114,100 had first told a friend or family member (48% of the women who had experienced current partner violence).

Previous Partner
  • Of the estimated 266,100 men (79% of the 336,600 men who had experience previous partner violence) who had told someone about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner, 196,600 had first told a friend or family member (59% of the men who had experienced previous partner violence).
  • Of the estimated 1,181,900 women (93% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) who had told someone about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner, 789,600 had first told a friend or family member (62% of the women who had experienced previous partner violence).


Advice or support seeking behaviours

For both current and previous partner violence, men were less likely than women to seek advice or support about the violence (Refer Table 24).

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED CURRENT PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never sought advice or support (a)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PREVIOUS PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never sought advice or support (a)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Most recently violent previous partner.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



Persons who had never sought advice or support:

Current Partner
  • An estimated 84,100 men (70% of the 119,600 men who had experience current partner violence) had never sought advice or support about the violence by their current partner.
  • An estimated 92,500 women (39% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) had never sought advice or support about the violence by their current partner.
Previous Partner
  • An estimated 160,100 men (48% of the 336,600 men who had experience previous partner violence) had never sought advice or support about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
  • An estimated 303,000 women (24% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) had never sought advice or support about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
Persons who had sought advice or support:

Current Partner
  • An estimated 35,500 men (30% of the 119,600 men who had experience current partner violence) had sought advice or support about the violence by their current partner.
  • Of the estimated 144,600 women (61% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) who had sought advice or support about the violence by their current partner, 101,300 women had sought advice or support from a friend or family member (43% of the women who had experienced current partner violence).
Previous Partner
  • An estimated 176,200 men (52% of the 336,600 men who had experience previous partner violence) had sought advice or support about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
  • Of the estimated 964,100 women (76% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) who had sought advice or support about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner, 707,600 women had sought advice or support from a friend or family member (56% of the women who had experienced previous partner violence),
      Police involvement

      The 2012 PSS collected information about whether the police had ever been contacted (by the respondent or by someone else) about any of the violence they had experienced by their partner (Refer Table 25 and Table 26).

      Both men and women were unlikely to have contacted the police about any partner violence they had experienced. Where the police had been contacted about partner violence, it was more likely that women who had experienced partner violence had contacted the police than men.

      Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED CURRENT PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never contacted the police(a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Includes where the police were contacted by the respondent or by someone else.

      Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia

      Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PREVIOUS PARTNER VIOLENCE, Proportion who had never contacted the police(a)

      Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Most recently violent previous partner. Includes where the police were contacted by the respondent or someone by else.

      Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



      Persons where police had never been contacted:

      Current Partner
      • An estimated 113,200 men (95% of the 119,600 men who had experience current partner violence) had never contacted the police about the violence by their current partner.
      • An estimated 190,100 women (80% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) had never contacted the police about the violence by their current partner.
      Previous Partner
      • An estimated 269,000 men (80% of the 336,600 men who had experience previous partner violence) had never contacted the police about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.
      • An estimated 730,300 women (58% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) had never contacted the police about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner.

      Women who had contacted the police:

      Current Partner
      • An estimated 47,000 women (20% of the 237,100 women who had experienced current partner violence) had contacted the police about the violence by their current partner.

      Previous Partner
      • Of the 536,900 (42% of the 1,267,200 women who had experience previous partner violence) who had contacted the police about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner, an estimated 184,800 (34% of the women who had contacted the police) reported that their partner had been charged and 158,300 of these women reported that their partner had gone to court (86% of women whose partner had been charged) (Refer Table 26).
      • Of the 536,900 women who had contacted the police about the violence by their most recently violent previous partner, an estimated 270,800 (50% of the women who had contacted the police) also had a restraining order issued against their partner (refer Endnote 3). Of those women who had a restraining order issued against their partner, an estimated 159,400 (58% of the women who had a restraining order issued) experienced further violence (Refer Table 26).


      FURTHER INFORMATION

      Further details of the information collected in the 2012 PSS are provided in the Data Item List available in the Downloads Tab. Additional information may be made available by request, on a fee for service basis, through the ABS Information Consultancy, or on the Confidentialised Unit Record File which is expected to be released in March 2014.


      END NOTES

      Endnote 1
      Respondents were asked whether they had ever sought advice or support from any of the following: General Practitioner (GP); Other health professional (e.g. nurse, psychologist, therapist); Counsellor or support worker; Telephone helpline (e.g. Lifeline, National Domestic Violence Hotline); Refuge or shelter; Police; Legal service (e.g. solicitor or Legal Aid); Financial service (e.g. Centrelink, financial counselling); Government Housing and Community Services (e.g. DHS); Friend or family member; Work colleague or boss; Priest/Minister/Rabbi etc; and Other.

      Endnote 2
      ‘Advice or support’ means listening to the respondent, being understanding, making suggestions, giving information, referring respondent to appropriate services, or offering further help of any kind. It includes contacting or visiting any source of help from a friend to a professional organisation, so long as the respondent perceived that they were seeking advice or support. It excludes anyone who was told or found out about the partner violence, but from whom the respondent did not actively seek advice or support and help sought for injuries, which did not involve the respondent seeking advice or support.

      Endnote 3
      Interviewers were trained to accept respondent's perception of whether a restraining order had been issued. Interviewers were trained to accept terminology used across different states of Australia to label violence orders including apprehended violence orders, domestic violence orders, intervention orders (etc). Any orders issued by a court or interim orders were also included.


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