Other Resources

Family Violence Law Help

National Legal Aid resource providing comprehensive information about domestic and family violence.

National Legal Aid has launched Family Violence Law Help, a new website for people affected by domestic and family violence, educators and front-line workers. The website uses illustrations to make information engaging and easy to understand. It is available in 23 languages and is designed as a starting point to give simple, clear information on domestic and family violence, family law, child protection and family violence protection orders.

Family Violence Law Help has illustrated factsheets that can be printed out and given to people specific to their legal problem.  The website also provides practical tips and links to where people affected by domestic and family violence can get help with legal advice, emergency housing, money and more in WA and Australia wide. A handy printable guide to key referrals in WA is available at

ALRC Review of the Family Law System

On 9 May 2017 the Turnbull Government announced its intention to direct the ALRC to conduct the first comprehensive review into the family law system since the commencement of the Family Law Act in 1976, with a view to making necessary reforms to ensure the family law system meets the contemporary needs of families and effectively addresses family violence and child abuse.

The ALRC received the Terms of Reference on 27 September 2017.

Review of the Family Law System - Issues Paper (IP 48) was released on 14 March 2018. This Issues Paper is the first consultation document in the Inquiry. It introduces the issues covered by the Terms of Reference and asks questions to assist in the development of reform responses through submissions from stakeholders. The submissions and further consultation rounds will inform the next stages of the process: a Discussion Paper, planned for release on 2 October 2018; and the Final Report in March 2019.

The ALRC received over 400 submissions in response to its Issues Paper released in March 2018. Public submissions are published online and can be viewed on the ALRC website.

On 29 June 2018, Dr Andrew Bickerdike was appointed as a part-time commissioner of the ALRC. Read media release.

On 27 July 2018, Professor Helen Rhoades presented at the 2018 AIFS Conference. Read speech.

On 23 August 2018, the WA Commissioner for Children and Young People, Colin Pettit, said that he wanted to ensure that the views of WA children and young people were included in the ALRC review of the family law system. Young people aged 12-21 with experience of the Family Court who are comfortable in sharing the views are encouraged to provide confidential feedback to the Commissioner. Read media release.

Review of the Family Law System: Discussion Paper (DP 86) was released on 2 October 2018, putting forward 124 proposed changes to the family law system. Key proposals include supporting increased participation by children in the family law system; and the establishment of the Family Law Commission to oversee the operation of the family law system and provide accreditation to family law practitioners. 

On 10 April 2019, the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) report, Family Law for the Future: An Inquiry into the Family Law System, was tabled in Parliament by the Attorney-General, the Hon Christian Porter MP.

The ALRC has made 60 recommendations for reform.

The ALRC recommends that the resolution of family law disputes be returned to the states and territories and that the federal family courts eventually be abolished.  Under the current system, children fall through the gaps between the family law courts, the child protection systems and the state and territory responses to family violence. This can be remedied only by having a single court focused on the best interests of the child that is able to resolve all family law, child protection and family violence issues together.

More broadly, the ALRC’s recommendations will ensure that the law provides a framework that assists families who are experiencing relationship breakdown to make arrangements for their children, property, and financial affairs.

Family Law for the Future: An Inquiry into the Family Law System (ALRC Report 135) and the Summary Report (ALRC 135 Summary) are available for viewing or free download at

National Community Attitudes towards Violence against Women Survey (NCAS) Findings

The findings of the 2017 National Community Attitudes towards Violence against Women Survey were  launched by ANROWS CEO Dr Heather Nancarrow at an event in Sydney on 30 November 2018. 

The NCAS is the world’s longest-running survey of community attitudes towards violence against women. It was initially developed on behalf of the Australian Government in 1995, drawing on an earlier 1987 survey. It is implemented every 4 years. The last two national waves were led by VicHealth (2009 and 2013). ANROWS led the 2017 survey.

The NCAS is a resource for anyone wanting to understand and prevent violence against women (VAW). It can be used by educators, policymakers, program planners, researchers, journalists, and students.
View NCAS information and reports

Invisible Practices Project

ANROWS launched the first research report from the Perpetrator Intervention Research Stream at a national symposium co-convened with the Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, the Hon. Pru Goward, MP on 4 December 2018.

The Invisible Practices: Intervention with fathers who use violence project, which commenced in early 2017, was led by the University of Melbourne’s Professor Cathy Humphreys. The research provides an evidence base for intervening with fathers who use domestic and family violence (DFV) in order to enhance support for women and children living with DFV. The project delivered an evidence-informed Practice guide for workers and highlights the need for organisations to undertake systemic change to embed these new practice approaches.

Structured interventions with men who use violence mostly occur through the criminal justice system and specialist men’s behaviour change programs. While other services, such as child protection and family services, work with fathers who use violence, this work has never been documented or formalised. In other words, to date, this work has been largely “invisible”.

The Invisible Practices project’s findings are structured around four themes:

key skills identified for working with fathers who use violence and control;

key factors identified in partnering with women;

key skills in ensuring a focus on children and young people; and

the role of organisations and practitioner capacity building.

For the full research report and practice guidelines, visit the ANROWS website.

Enhancing Online Safety (Non-consensual Sharing of Intimate Images) Act 2018

New legislation passed by the parliament gives the Office of the eSafety Commissioner a range of enforcement options to tackle image-based abuse and hold perpetrators accountable. 

Under the Enhancing Online Safety (Non-consensual Sharing of Intimate Images) Act 2018, individuals may be subject to civil penalties of up to $105,000 and corporations up to $525,000 if they do not comply with a request from the eSafety Commissioner to remove an intimate image. Perpetrators may also face penalties of imprisonment for up to five years, or seven years if they have already had three civil penalty orders made against them.

Read full media release given by the Office of the eSafety Commission on 6 September.

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