Understanding Violence Against Women in CALD Communities and the need for primary prevention strategies and a framework for action.

Stream: Panel 27 - Gender Politics: Gender Based Violence 2 - Domestic and Family Violence 
Date: Tuesday, 27 September 2016
Time: 11.30 am – 1.00 pm


Australia’s commitment to PVAW is encapsulated in the National plan to prevent violence against women and their children 2010–2022. In the National Plan there was a commitment made to the prevention of violence against women (VAW) and to meet the needs of subgroups including those from culturally and linguistically diverse communities (CALD). The aim of this paper is to detail the findings of a project that was undertaken by AMES Australia. The objective of the project was to ascertain a common understanding of VAW in CALD communities and to identify actions. Broad consultation through workshops, interviews with stakeholders, and leaders within CALD communities were conducted. A national review was undertaken looking at primary intervention programs and services to assist VAW in CALD communities. Based on these findings a primary prevention strategy,framework and action plan was devised. Although the project had a focus on all CALD communities, particular emphasis was placed on new arrivals to Australia. The project started from the premise that VAW is rooted in gender inequality, discrimination and harmful cultural and social norms. Culture is neither fixed nor an inherent feature of particular individuals or groups, rather it is shaped and therefore can be changed by social and economic forces. This project demonstrates the importance of ensuring the safety and wellbeing of women from CALD backgrounds, to meet policy commitments to multiculturalism, access and equity, gender equality and human rights, and to ensure that the economic and social benefits of migration for all are realised.


Wendy Lobwein (Presenter), AMES Australia
Wendy Lobwein is Senior Manager, Prevention of Violence Against Women at AMES Australia.