violence against women

An event continuing the open discussion on solutions to gendered violence was held on July 31 at the Resistance Centre in Melbourne.

Guest speakers were Sumaiya Muyeen, PhD in Gender and Cultural studies; Margarita Windisch, feminist activist and Socialist Alliance member; and Pia Cerveri, Women's and Equality Co-lead organiser at Victorian Trades Hall. An open discussion was held afterward.

In a continuation of the rancid rape culture spewing from Australian university and high school campuses, a national grouping of young men identified with the Facebook page “Yeah the Boys”, which boasts half a million likes, is spitting chunks onto social media.

The page is receiving attention now because members of the group scheduled a “male-only” meet-up at Sydney's Coogee Beach. While the anonymous ‘Yeah the Boys’ page admins sought to distance themselves from the event, within hours thousands of the page’s followers had jumped behind it.

Well my only New Year's resolution was to have no hope the status quo would somehow miraculously change itself in 2016 — and it is a resolution that has proven all too easy to keep.

For instance, any hopes that changing the “five” to a “six” on the annual calendar would lessen the misogyny strangling decency in this country were pretty quickly defeated.

Viewers of the ABC TV documentary Hitting Home, screened to coincide with the International Day against Violence Against Women on November 25, could be forgiven for thinking Australia’s “domestic violence crisis” is finally being taken seriously.

Produced by ABC TV's Sarah Ferguson in cooperation with NSW Police and the NSW Department of Justice, Episode 1 of the two-part series took viewers inside DV refuges, specialist police units and courtrooms and featured interviews with incredibly courageous survivors. Their message to victims, and Ferguson’s, was clear: “Get out. Now”.

In January this year, the Prime Minister Tony Abbott drew attention to the “unfolding tragedy” of violence against women and vowed to put the issue of what he misleadingly calls “domestic violence” on the national agenda.

Two thousand people rallied in Federation Square on April 4 to oppose Reclaim Australia freely spreading racism and fascism on the streets of Melbourne.

Anti-racist participants included socialists, anarchists, feminists, refugee rights advocates, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and the politically unaligned. All were united in a common cause to stop the spread of racism in Australia.

Former Governor-General Quentin Bryce, who chaired the Special Task force on Domestic and Family Violence, handed the report Not Now, Not Ever: Putting an End to Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on February 28.

The task force was established on September 10 last year by the previous LNP government and charged to deliver its findings by February 28. It included several now-former MPs.

About 150 people walked through Perth on November 16 to call for an end to blaming victims of sexual assault, in the city's third annual SlutWalk.

Initiated in response to comments made by a Canadian police officer that women should avoid looking like sluts if they don't want to be raped, SlutWalk continues to attract global support.

Last year, more than 5000 people gathered in Brunswick to protest violence against women. It was the largest Reclaim the Night mobilisation since the early 1990s.

Reclaim the Night (or Take Back the Night in the United States) is a global feminist movement that protests against the specific forms of harassment, victim blaming, sexual assault and violence experienced by women.

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