Family, domestic and sexual violence is a major health, welfare and social issue in Australia and can have a lasting impact on individuals, families and the community. It can affect people of all ages and backgrounds, but predominantly affects women and children.
Data are essential for understanding the extent, nature, and impact of family, domestic and sexual violence. Data also provide insight into how people engage with relevant health and welfare services following experiences of violence. The knowledge gained from these data can then be used to inform decision-making, service planning and resource allocation to improve outcomes for people who are, or may be, affected.
The importance of building a solid evidence base of quality data was emphasised in the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children, 2010–2022 (National Plan). Since the National Plan was released, the Australian Government, states and territories and a range of national information and research agencies have been working to improve family, domestic and sexual violence data and reporting.
This report focuses on key national data and information products that provide the evidence base for monitoring family, domestic and sexual violence in the population, noting enhancements that have been made over the life of the National Plan. The report also describes how the evidence base can be used to measure and monitor family, domestic and sexual violence and highlights information gaps and opportunities for improvements.