Greens MP takes your petitions to parliament
NEW South Wales is in the grip of a domestic violence crisis, according to Greens spokeswoman on the status of women, Mehreen Faruqi, and she is taking your concerns to State Parliament.
Dr Faruqi this week accepted The Coffs Advocate's Terror at Home petitions, signed by readers, campaigning for greater education in schools on combating domestic violence and moves towards specialised courts hearing domestic violence-related incidents.
"Social change is needed," she said.
"I applaud this type of media campaign as the prevalence of domestic violence in our communities is occurring at an increasing rate.
"Alarmingly, we have heard of funding cuts across the state that have led to refuges not being able to support women and children seeking help, we've heard stories of mothers and children sleeping in cars to avoid becoming victims.
"There have been 34 women brutally killed at the hands of people they knew in domestic and family violence in Australia this year."
The reason APN Media launched the Terror At Home campaign across Queensland and New South Wales was to lobby government to commit to measures that would seriously tackle the shameful epidemic of domestic and family violence.
In Coffs Harbour, crime statistics show domestic violence assault rose 13.3% - from 441 instances in 2013 to 500 last year.
Terror at Home calls for specialist domestic and family violence courts to be established, with specialist magistrates, who will also play a part in child protection and family law children's matters.
The campaign also calls for the introduction of comprehensive, respectful relationships programs embedded in the education of all state school students, to help young people recognise unhealthy behaviour and to address long-term gender attitudes that ultimately contribute to violence against women.
The campaign won the support of Australian of the Year Rosie Batty.