Conference to combat domestic violence

Professionals and the community need to work together to prevent domestic violence, a researcher says. In October, GPs, psychiatrists, the police, politicians, not-for-profits, and those in the legal system will...

Professionals and the community need to work together to prevent domestic violence, a researcher says. 

In October, GPs, psychiatrists, the police, politicians, not-for-profits, and those in the legal system will meet to discuss ways to work together to recognise, manage and prevent domestic violence. 

Professor Jayashri Kulkarni, Monash Alfred Psychiatry research centre, said after working in the area of women’s mental health for 25 years, she had seen the impact of violence on the mental health and general wellbeing of women and children. 

“The Mind Your Family conference will help bring professionals together to better understand and assist the victims and perpetrators of family violence,” Professor Kulkarni said.

“Statistics show that from the age of 15, 15 per cent of women and five per cent of men experience violence from a former partner.” 

Professor Kulkarni said the link between abuse in childhood and adulthood among women living with mental illness was alarmingly high.

“For women - depression, anxiety, post­-traumatic stress disorder, personality disorders, dissociative identity disorder, psychosis, and eating disorders - are the problems most commonly associated with the experience of violence,” Professor Kulkarni said. 

Professor Kulkarni said the aim of the conference was to have an integrated, holistic view from the professionals involved in dealing with domestic violence.

At the conference a toolkit for GPs will be provided which will have a series of modules focusing on how to recognise domestic violence, how to engage the victims and perpetrators, and how to navigate the legal system.

The conference is on October 11 at Monash University’s Clayton campus. For further information go to: www.mindyourfamily.org.au