Social Development Committee: Domestic and Family Violence Inquiry

Mr PEDERICK ( Hammond ) ( 11:53 ): In light of the time, to be fair to my colleagues I will try to be brief, but I will speak to the 39th report of the Social Development Committee into domestic and family violence. I would like to note our ever-hardworking staff in the Social Development Committee and also the contributions of the members for Fisher, Torrens and Reynell, the Hon. Gerry Kandelaars, the Hon. Gail Gago, the Hon. Jing Lee and the Hon. Kelly Vincent.

This was quite an interesting inquiry and, being the only regional member on the committee, I was very keen that we got out into the regions; thankfully, we did—through the Murraylands, Riverland, Eyre Peninsula and the South-East—and we certainly had representation from communities in isolated areas. It is a very important inquiry to make sure that we keep our community safe.

As has been noted in the member for Fisher's contribution, a percentage of domestic violence victims are male, but I must say they are very much in the minority. In the main, sadly, women are the victims. Children are also the victims of family violence. I think some of the recommendations around perpetrator programs and educating our children at a young age, so that we can educate our youth at an early age to have that respect for their partners in the future, are the real key.

Sadly, what seems to happen at the moment is that so much work is at the crisis end of the debate. There are so many issues around emergency housing, especially in regional areas, where it is hard to have an anonymous emergency housing facility because quite often in the country everyone knows where everything is.

There are 35 excellent recommendations in the report, and I think the agency I was most impressed with during the inquiry is the Multi-Agency Protection Service. It is quite underfunded and runs on a shoestring, but spans across agencies relating to families, education, police and others. I really commend the work that they are doing to take out that silo mentality and actually get people working together to achieve the right outcomes for our society.

In fairness to my compatriots, I certainly applaud the report and hope that we get some great outcomes out of this to be delivered by both state and federal governments. I note that in Murray Bridge last night the police held a domestic violence forum. I could not be there because of parliament, but there is another forum I will be presenting at next month in Murray Bridge. I commend the report.