Coercive Control

Coercive Control

Coercive control covers patterns of behaviours designed to exert power, domination and manipulation over another person, crush their confidence and incite fear in them. It can involve controlling their finances, monitoring their movements, and isolating them from friends and family; it is a known precursor to domestic and family violence. I supported a government bill to criminalise coercive control so that the criminal justice system can intervene before the abuse escalates into violence.

But there are complexities in legislating, which if not done sensitively, could see victims incorrectly charged as perpetrators for example if they control an abusive partner’s access to children or money. Those working in the domestic and family violence sector want more time to assess potential impacts and train police and the judiciary.

I amended the bill to create a taskforce to do that work before the offence comes into effect in 2024, to bring forward the mandated review and to provide two follow-up reviews, legislating multiple points to uncover any problems. My contribution to debate > HERE.

We still need to address the cultural issues that lead to domestic and family violence and provide more support for people trying to leave including safe housing. The bill will now go to the Legislative Council where it will be referred to an inquiry before it is voted on. 

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