The term ‘Family and Domestic Violence’ (FDV) covers a wide range of abusive behaviours committed within intimate relationships such as those involving family members, children, partners, ex-partners, or caregivers. It can include many types of behaviour or threats, including: physical violence, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, verbal abuse and intimidation, economic and social deprivation, damage of personal property and abuse of power. Family and domestic violence occurs across all socioeconomic and cultural groups. However, FDV may become a more complex problem in population groups where it compounds existing social disadvantage and a lack of support.
Family and domestic violence may result in social, psychological, health and financial consequences that can have profound impacts on a victim’s quality of life. It can have a direct effect not only upon victims, their children, their families and friends, employers and co-workers, but may also have significant flow-on effects for the local and broader community. The impact of violence may include economic costs of a direct or indirect nature, such as the costs to the community of bringing perpetrators to justice, the costs of medical treatment or support services for victims, and losses in business productivity. As a substantial proportion of domestic violence incidents go unreported, however, it is difficult to measure the true extent of these impacts.