The scale of the issue

“I want to tell everybody that family violence happens to everybody. No matter how nice your house is, how intelligent you are. It happens to anyone and everyone.” - Rosie Batty

Around one in three women worldwide have experienced physical or sexual violence – mostly by an intimate partner1. Around 38 per cent of all women who are murdered are killed by their partners. The World Health Organisation says that violence against women has reached "a global health problem of epidemic proportions".

One woman dies at the hands of a current or former partner almost every week in Australia2. Australian police deal with an estimated 657 incidents of domestic violence each day – one every two minutes3 - and one woman is hospitalised every three hours4. Access Economics estimates that around 1.6 million Australian women have experienced domestic violence in some form.

And these are just the official numbers.

Researchers estimate that less than half of domestic violence is actually reported. What we do know is that intimate partner violence is the leading contributor to death, disability and illness in Australian women aged 15-44. And we know that women in Australia are three times more likely than men to experience violence at the hands of a current or former partner.

Of the women who experience domestic violence in Australia more than half have children in their care. These children can be victims of domestic violence by either witnessing the abuse of a loved one, or experiencing it themselves. Many will suffer the consequences of domestic violence well into adulthood.

For more information read The Guardian's article on domestic & family violence in Australia