Perpetrators and people who use violence

Developing a system-wide approach to keeping perpetrators accountable, connected and responsible for stopping their violence

Every time a person who uses violence interacts with the family violence service system, there is an opportunity to influence behaviour change. This change is more likely to happen when the government, the broader service system, community and society are working together to prevent violence or intervene early.

This is why we are developing a system-wide approach to keep people who use violence visible and accountable to take responsibility for their violence and change their behaviour.

Key activity in 2022

  • We contributed to the draft National principles to address coercive control, with the consultation draft released in September 2022. These principles will help enable a shared understanding of coercive control across Australia and will help to inform more consistent responses. The principles are expected to be finalised in 2023.
  • We increased access to men’s behaviour change programs, with over 641 placements in these programs and 203 individual case management placements in Community Correctional Services in 2021–22.
  • In 2022, the Place for Change Program (formerly the Medium-term Perpetrator Accommodation Service) provided approximately 50 adults using family violence with up to six months of stable accommodation. Access to accommodation is dependent upon recipients’ behavioural and attitudinal change to address their use of violence.
  • We expanded the Tuning into Respectful Relationships program bringing the total number of prisons invited into the program to 11. The short program introduces remand and short sentence prisoners to the concept of healthy relationships including building awareness of the benefits of respectful attitudes and behaviours and understanding the connection between disrespect and acts of violence. In 2021–22, Anglicare delivered this program to 206 participants including 148 men, 59 women, two transgender people and one gender-diverse person.
  • We recognise many perpetrators of family violence are also clients of other social service programs. From June 2022, the Better, Connected Care reform (formerly Common Clients) operates statewide and began testing new integrated, person-centred service models through the Putting Families First pilot.
  • We designed the intensive interventions for high-risk perpetrators pilot service model (the serious-risk pilot), to increase the visibility of serious-risk perpetrators across the system and the coordination and management of responses. The pilot will provide a dedicated, coordinated response to serious-risk perpetrators and victim survivors impacted by their violence. Across three sites, the pilot program will deliver intensive interventions and individual behaviour change work through specialist family violence services and multi-agency collaboration to help prevent future harm to victim survivors.