PHYSICAL AND THREATENED PHYSICAL HARM DATA
COLLECTION OF THE DATA
People were asked to provide information on their experiences of physical and threatened physical harm in the previous 12 months.
Physical harm refers to any incident where a person was physically hurt or harmed by someone on purpose, including physical fights. Other forms of abuse (e.g. sexual, emotional, psychological) are not included.
Threatened physical harm refers to threats of physical harm that occurred either face-to-face or non-face-to-face (e.g. via instant message/social networking sites, text message, phone, email or writing).
- Due to the sensitive nature of the questions, responses were not compulsory, and a person may have chosen not to answer some or any of the questions.
RELATIONSHIP TO OFFENDER
- The same question wording was used in both non-remote and remote areas.
- This is the first time questions on physical and threatened physical harm have been included in the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey.
- The development and testing of the questions was overseen by an expert advisory panel, comprising members from government and non-government agencies.
- The question wording used in 2018–19 was drawn from a variety of ABS surveys and was thoroughly tested in non-remote and remote areas of Australia, including in discrete Indigenous communities.
People who had experienced physical harm or face-to-face threatened physical harm in the last 12 months were asked to identify:
- the offender(s) of the most recent incident
- the offender(s) related to all incidents within the last 12 months.
People may have experienced physical harm or face-to-face threatened physical harm by more than one offender in the previous 12 months. An offender may have been an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person or a non-Indigenous person.
Identifying experiences of family and domestic violence
A person is considered to have experienced family and domestic violence within the context of the survey if they identified an intimate partner or family member as an offender.
An intimate partner is a:
- current partner (husband/wife/defacto)
- previous partner (husband/wife/defacto)
- boyfriend/girlfriend/ex-boyfriend/ex-girlfriend, or
A family member is a:
Experiences of harm are likely to be under-reported. While the relationship to offender data items can provide an indication of the number of people that have experienced physical harm or face-to-face threatened physical harm, the data does not provide a complete picture of physical harm, or the prevalence of family and domestic violence.
- Interviews are conducted face-to-face with a trained interviewer, but there is no requirement for a private interview setting. People may be less likely to disclose any experiences of physical harm or threatened physical harm by an intimate partner or family member if the offender is present in the home at the time of the interview.
COMPARABILITY TO OTHER DATA SOURCES
- Some people who have experienced physical harm or threatened physical harm may not have wished to disclose this to the interviewer for other reasons.
The physical and threatened physical harm data collected in 2018–19 is not comparable to other ABS data sources collecting similar data, including: