24th March, 2022
inTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence have announced a series of new
policy recommendations ahead of what is expected to be a milestone year for the
The recommendations are intended to anticipate the reform environment created by
the imminent release of the Second National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women
and Children and the upcoming Federal Budget.
inTouch’s policy platform comprises of eleven points, which address the complex
systemic barriers faced by migrant and refugee women who experience family
violence and are informed by inTouch’s 37 years of experience in the sector.
“We welcome the significant, multijurisdictional investment being made into
prevention and recovery,” inTouch CEO, Michal Morris said. “However, we know that
family violence occurs across all countries and cultures, and over half of all Australians
were born overseas or have a parent that was.”
“Any response to family violence must reflect the diversity of victim-survivors and
perpetrators alike, and embed culture, language and faith into the way we support
and work with the community. We must keep the needs of migrant and refugee
women at the forefront of our minds within the kind of dynamic reform environment
we will see over the next 12 months. inTouch’s policy platform ensures that these
women are thoroughly in view.”
inTouch’s policy platform, “Embed Migrant and Refugee Voices and Experiences into
the National Response to Family Violence,” calls for urgent funding and support for
several key categories-
Embedding culturally safe care into service provision through use of interpreters,
specialist training and bilingual/bicultural case management throughout the sector is
critical, as is a broad, national investment into specialist services like inTouch.
Additionally, the platform details the many systemic obstacles that women from
migrant and refugee backgrounds experiencing family violence can face when seeking
assistance. Crucially, inTouch advocates for a special family violence visa with access
to health and government services and working rights, refined referral and assistance
pathways and data collection, additional training for law enforcement and the judicial
system and increased capacity for specialist legal services.
Key to informing the family violence response in communities is consultation and
collaboration with these communities, led by women with lived experience.
“If the unique needs of culturally diverse groups are considered and funded as a part
of our service system, we really can be empowered to provide a comprehensive
response to family violence in this country,” Ms Morris said.
“Migrant and refugee women deserve the same access to support and safety as
everyone else- whenever and however they need it.”
View the Policy Platform here.