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Victoria University joins partnership to prevent violence against women

Her Excellency the Honourable Linda Dessau AC. Photograph by Chloe May.

This morning at Newport’s Substation, The Preventing Violence Together partnership launched its new strategy, Preventing Violence Together 2030: Western Region Strategy to Prevent Violence Against Women.

The partnership, made up of 19 organisations, including Maribyrnong City Council, Melbourne City Council, Victoria Police, West CASA (Centre Against Sexual Assault), and Women’s Health West, will focus on working collaboratively on preventing violence against women across Melbourne’s west. The event also marks the official involvement of two newly approved members; the Western Bulldogs and Victoria University.

Launched by the Governor of Victoria, Her Excellency the Honourable Linda Dessau AC, the event featured a keynote address from the Honourable Fiona Richardson, Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence.

The strategy will guide the work of the Preventing Violence Together partnership, by outlining actions and a shared vision: ‘women and girls across Melbourne’s west live free from violence and discrimination and have equal status, rights, opportunities, representation and respect’.

The strategy was developed following consultation with partners, service providers, and communities of interest to ensure it is relevant and tailored to the needs of Melbourne’s western region.

VU representative Mr Shaun Eltham (Vice-President People and Culture) said Victoria University’s involvement in the Preventing Violence Together 2030: Western Region Strategy to Prevent Violence Against Women strategy is an important step towards addressing a critical community issue.

“The PVT is doing important work in the area of prevention, by focussing on public awareness and emphasising the value of communities, and organisations working together. Victoria University has a zero tolerance approach towards sexual assault and sexual harassment. We are committed to addressing this serious issue, and the need to promote equitable respectful relationships. We look forward to working with our new partners to end violence against women.”

Dr Robyn Gregory, CEO of Women’s Health West, the Preventing Violence Together lead partner, said:  “Violence against women is a gendered problem, with the majority of intimate partner violence, sexual assault and family violence in Australia perpetrated by men against women. It is a problem rooted in gender-based power inequalities between women and men.

We know violence against women is preventable. By working as part of this long established partnership across the west, we can take action to end men’s violence against women.”

The strategy is a coordinated, action-based approach to preventing violence against women across Melbourne’s west. It is accompanied by an annual action plan and an evaluation plan, which can be accessed along with the strategy at www.whwest.org.au.

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