Domestic and Family Violence and Sexual Assault
Domestic and family violence includes behaviour or threats that aim to control a partner or
other family member by causing fear or threatening their safety. Domestic and family violence
is against the law in Australia. It can include:
hitting, choking or hurting the family member or partner
denying essential money to the family member or partner
isolating the partner from friends and family
constantly insulting or criticising the partner
threatening children or pets.
Sexual assault is sexual behaviour directed towards another person without their consent.
Sexual assault includes:
forcing anyone to have sex or perform sexual acts
forcing anyone to watch pornography
having sex or performing sexual acts with a child.
In Australia, it is against the law to sexually assault anyone. A person who commits sexual
assault can go to jail, whether they are a man or a woman. Sexual assault between people in
a relationship, marriage or family is also against the law.
Women have the same rights as men. Australian laws treat women and men equally.
Everyone has the right to live free from violence, in a happy relationship and community.
Women do not have to accept being treated badly or harmed.
If you or someone you know is in danger, telephone 000 and ask for “Police”. Police in
Australia are safe and can be trusted.
The Family Safety Pack helps you to understand your rights and where to get support if you
need it. There are culturally sensitive counselling services in Australia and it is acceptable to
ask them for help. The pack is available in a range of translated languages at
1800 RESPECT provides free, confidential telephone and online counselling and information.
Counsellors will listen to you, answer questions and can refer you to other support services in
your local area. Call 1800 737 732 or go to www.1800respect.org.au
MensLine is a counselling service that assists men to manage family and relationship
difficulties including issues of violence. Phone 1300 789 978 or go to www.mensline.org.au
Call 131 450
If you need an interpreter, call the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) for free
on 131 450. TIS National does not provide counselling but can help you to communicate with