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Family, domestic and sexual violence is a major health and welfare issue. It affects people of all ages and from all backgrounds, but mainly women and children. This report explores the impact of family, domestic and sexual violence among vulnerable groups.
Family, domestic and sexual violence in Australia: continuing the national story, 2019: in brief is a companion to this report.
1 woman was killed every 9 days and 1 man every 29 days by a partner between 2014–15 and 2015–16
1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men with disability experienced emotional abuse from a partner
Police recorded 25,000 sexual assaults in 2017
More than 30 calls a day were made to elder abuse helplines across Australia in 2017–18
First year: 1995
Latest year: 2017–18
Year in this publication: 2017–18
Size: State and territory criminal courts finalised 592,455 defendants in 2017–18
Methodology: Administrative dataset
Geography: National, state/territory
The ABS Criminal Courts, Australia presents information on the characteristics of defendants finalised by Australian state and territory criminal courts. This includes information on the offences, case outcomes and sentences associated with those defendants.
This publication presents information about defendants who were finalised in the criminal jurisdictions of the Higher, Magistrates’ and Children’s Courts across Australia’s states and territories during the reference period. A finalised defendant is one for whom all charges have been formally completed so that they cease to be an item of work to be dealt with by the court. The experimental family, domestic and sexual violence (FDSV) data include the following ANZSOC offence types:
Given the differences in how FDSV offences are identified or defined (as described below), direct comparisons of the state/territory FDSV data presented in the Criminal Courts publication should not be made.
Experimental data relating to family and domestic violence defendants are available for all states and territories except South Australia.
The FDSV data published in the ABS Criminal Courts collection are based on information recorded in the state and territory court administrative systems. FDSV offences are identified based on an indicator (or ‘flag’) that is recorded by either the police and/or courts, as follows:
In Victoria, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania, police officers flag FDSV offences, following investigating/charging, on their crime recording systems, and this is transferred through to courts administrative systems.
In New South Wales and Queensland, FDV offences are identified based on FDSV-specific legislation and are flagged either by police or when the matter is dealt with by the court. The related legislation includes:
In the Australian Capital Territory, FDSV offences are identified and flagged either by police (following investigation/charging), or where the court list hearing type is ‘Family Violence’ (FV).
Given these differences in how FDSV offences are identified or defined, direct comparisons of the state/territory FDSV data presented should not be made.
For more information, please visit ABS Criminal Courts, 2017–18 cat. No. 4513 Explanatory notes.
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