Podcasts

There’s No Place Like Home Episode Four: Nina*

By Future Women

Podcasts

By Future Women

INTRO: This series comes with a content note for anyone who has been through abuse or knows someone who has. Statistically, that is a lot of us. Some of what you’ll hear in this podcast is distressing. Although we know it’s important to hear directly from victim-survivors about what they’ve been through, this content may be confronting and won’t be suitable for everyone.

Please check the show notes for phone numbers you can contact to receive confidential support.

There’s No Place Like Home is a Future Women podcast  in collaboration with our proud partner, Commonwealth Bank; supporting long-term financial independence for victim-survivors through CommBank Next Chapter.

We acknowledge that we produced this series on what always has been, and always will be, Aboriginal land.

NINA*: So the officer, like, we really just made most of the statement around the harassment. And he says, Okay, I need you to sign this. And that phrase, right, there was what stuck out in my mind. Because Joe told me if I ever signed a statement, I’m done. I’m done. He will find me, he will ruin me.

TARANG CHAWLA: My name is Tarang Chawla, and I’m a writer, lawyer and anti-violence advocate. I’m also the host of There’s No Place Like Home, a podcast about family violence that puts the voices of survivors at the centre of the story.

Today, you’re going to meet Nina. We’ve given her a pseudonym and altered her voice digitally so that we can protect her true identity.

NINA: Joe, and I had met about six months, initially, before we started dating. So he was seeing, a girl that I knew. So they had obviously split, a relationship of mine had ended.

So we initially met, you know, one day, didn’t hear anything for six months.

So he finds me on social media, sends me messages, and you know, this was the time when the relationship that I was in before had ended on amicable terms. So it was just constant bombardment of, you’re so beautiful, I want you to be the mother of my children, we’re going to get married, like right away. So right out of the gate, it was, they call it love bombing. And the therapist basically told me, no one will love you more than a hungry, homeless narcissist. And that’s exactly what he was.

TARANG CHAWLA: Joe and Nina got to know each other quickly. And, to Nina, he seemed great.

NINA: So he made it out to be that he was an author, that he had published all these books, and that he owned these other businesses and was a very high functioning businessman. So, of course, I could look him up by his name on Google. So I didn’t feel like there was, you know, any reason that I shouldn’t believe him at that point.

TARANG CHAWLA: With an element of trust having been established, Nina and Joe’s relationship moved fast. Three weeks in, they were engaged and not long after that, they were living together. You’ll have noticed by now that abusive relationships are often fast moving at the start.

NINA: The first time that he put his hands on me was toward the end of January. So he would throw chairs across the room. And this was all in anger over, like social media. If someone would comment on a photo, I don’t post a lot on social media, but I post a few things like for sporting events, and he, he just watched it, he watched who commented, who liked it. And he had an issue with nearly every person who commented or liked it, even to the point of creating fake email addresses in their name and emailing me from it. Saying, like, Hey, baby, let’s catch up, you know, trying to bait me.

TARANG CHAWLA: This combination of jealousy and possession frightened Nina. But she was just as frightened of going to the police for help. That’s because Joe had told Nina he was a police officer before they met.

We haven’t been able to verify whether or not that is even true. It’s possible that Joe served in the force. He certainly liked to use the idea that he had contacts in the police to discourage Nina from calling triple 0. He also liked to mimic forcibly arresting her.

NINA: The first assaults were grabbing my wrist and twisting my hands around my back. So he used to be a police officer, so you know, you’ve seen how they’ll grab someone’s wrist and twist it behind their back. He did that to me. He would grab the back of my neck and shove my head down.

TARANG CHAWLA: Joe would alternate between violence and tenderness in the aftermath of these attacks. He’d hurt Nina, and then he’d apologise. And then the next time, he’d hurt her even more before apologising again. It was a cycle of ongoing abusive behaviour, in which Nina suffered.

NINA: So when this first happened. I would leave the house for a couple days, and then I would come back. So I would leave and let him cool down. He would beg me, please come home, please come home. Don’t leave me. So I would go back home. A lot of things happened. From him, choking me, smacking me in the face with pillows, very hard. He would run and knock me down to the ground. spitting on me. Like a lot of it was choking and slapping.

TARANG: I’m going to introduce you to Dr Maiike Moller. She is a physician at the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine, and the clinical lead on family violence.

DR MAIIKE MOLLER: The most common injuries are probably just the most common injuries that you will see generally, so nonspecific bruises, you know, bruises on bony prominences, lacerations, abrasions, but things that are a little bit more specific and tell a little bit more of a story would be sort of patterned bruises. So what we might sometimes see specifically is fingertip bruising, so clusters of small round or oval bruises on the upper arms, which might signify restraint.

Strangulation is obviously a big focus. So we’re always looking, if there’s been a history of strangulation, looking for really subtle signs of bleeding in the whites of the eyes, or marks around the neck, or symptoms of a hoarse voice, things like that.

TARANG CHAWLA: Dr Moller examines people who’ve been abused and she’s right. Strangulation is an insidious form of abuse because it can be effectively hidden or denied. Only about 50 per cent of people who’ve been choked have marks on their neck to show it.

But even when it fails to leave a visible mark, the hidden scars are painful and dangerous. An attacker who uses non-fatal strangulation is seven times more likely to kill the woman they’re abusing. It’s a predictor of future violence.

DR MAIIKE MOLLER: Strangulation in particular, there might be some people who don’t necessarily recognize the severity of it, they might say, well, I feel okay now. So, I know that I passed out, but I came back to, so they might not necessarily recognize the severity. And if there aren’t any visible signs or symptoms, then they might not feel that it’s, there’s relevance in disclosing it if they’ve attended with an injury elsewhere with a, you know, an open wound or a fractured and that that that might be distracting or from from the strangulation also occurred.

NINA: I had been in contact with legal aid and the women’s domestic violence court Advocate Service. So I had been in and out of there at least three times, saying what do I do, he’s threatening me that if I don’t come back to him, he’s going to file charges against me. He’s going to, you know, do all these things to me, if I don’t come back to them. I don’t know what to do.

I had called the police after he had assaulted me. He ran at me and knocked me over. He’s a large being. So he ran at me and knocked me over. I had scrapes on my arms and bruises on my leg. I called the police then but I was just too scared to talk to them. So I called triple zero. And I started to tell them what happened. I said, listen, I just can’t tell you. I can’t tell you and I hung up. And they kept calling me back and asking me what happened. I said, I just can’t tell you, I’m too scared to tell you. I went to the courthouse and I spoke to the court advocate, person and I said I want to make a statement, I need help, I need to get out. He was gonna kill me. So we go over to the police station, and I start to get my statement. So I was there for a couple hours. 

TARANG CHAWLA: When Joe realised Nina was planning to leave the relationship and pursue legal action against him, he reacted. Joe ramped up his attention towards her.
His efforts to communicate with her and control her were doubled and then redoubled.

NINA: So he had constantly called me like, from a blocked number, sent me text messages, sent me emails, so we counted them all and there was about 100 of each within a 24 hour period.

TARANG CHAWLA: Police checked Joe’s record and found he was on a court-ordered good behaviour bond for domestic violence matters against his former wife. They then had some questions for Nina. 

NINA: So the officer like we really just made most of the statement around the harassment. And then he had to go through a list of questions with me of, does he use alcohol? Does he use drugs? Has he been violent against you? Has he hit you? Has he choked you? Has he been sexually abusive to you? So we have to go through all these questions, the answer is yes to all of them. So then he’s asking more about the physical abuse. So I told him everything. 

He took photos of the emails, the text messages, the phone calls in my phone, I showed him videos of my bruises, I showed him videos of Joe screaming, hitting me, yelling. I showed him everything. So he takes this report. And he says, Okay, I need you to sign this. And that phrase, right there was what stuck out in my mind because Joe told me if I ever signed a statement, I’m done. I’m done. He will find me, he will ruin me.

TARANG CHAWLA: Nina didn’t sign the statement. But police assured her that even without a formal statement, there was significant evidence to corroborate her story. And so she went home, to wait for further news about the apprehended violence order she’d sought to take out.

While making this episode, experts in New South Wales told us that usually – with this much evidence – police would take out an AVO to protect a victim.

Sadly, this didn’t happen for Nina. A few days passed and still, she heard nothing from the police.

NINA: There was no communication with me about an AVO that should have been put in place. There was just nothing.

TARANG CHAWLA: There was no record of the statement Nina had spent hours giving to a police officer. There was no record of the videos, or the photos, or the screenshots of abusive communication that Joe had sent to Nina.

Nina’s experience speaks to a specific complaint of some victim-survivors. The police don’t always have the right tools, skills or knowledge, to appropriately respond in family violence matters. Thankfully, investment and training are shifting the dial in this space, as the police force tries to make sure that what happened to Nina isn’t repeated.

NINA: And that was when I had like, the fresh bruises all over me. And these two officers stood there, and they said, Why don’t you just change your number and move? And I looked him right in the eyes and I said, that’s how people get murdered, because it is. Like just changing your phone number and moving doesn’t stop the situation.


TARANG CHAWLA: Lauren Callaway is Victoria’s Assistant Commissioner of its Family Violence Command. And she knows, better than most, that the system needs to keep improving if it wants to encourage people like Nina to show up at a police station and report their abuser. 

ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER LAUREN CALLAWAY: I often get asked, Well, how will we know if people are safer? And I say, well, we want police to be available to listen to the whole story without judgment, to show empathy, not because they have to, because they actually feel it – because they’re connecting with the victim and the trauma they’ve experienced. And we want them to respond in ways that keep victims safe, hold perpetrators to account and send a message to the community that says, “we will be here, call us and we will help you.”

TARANG CHAWLA: Two months after she originally sought protection from police, Nina hit Joe across the back and fled. Their relationship had started up again at this point… and Nina says that she was defending herself after Joe flew into a rage… over her failure to include the right number of emojis in a comment on his Instagram.

But, on the basis of a visible welt and Joe’s word, the police charged Nina with an offense. Nina states that there was no mention of her allegations that Joe had first cornered her, picked up a weapon and threatened Nina’s life. No reference to the fact that this was just one incident in Joe’s campaign of abuse and violence. 

NANETTE REUBEN: More often, primary victims find themselves as the defendant. And in those cases, I represent those women in court. 

TARANG: Nanette Reuben is a Sydney-based criminal lawyer who’s been an expert in domestic violence law for 35 years. 

NANETTE REUBEN: In my experience, things that happen to women in domestic violence situations, don’t leave marks, either at all, or very often don’t leave marks immediately. So if they put a pillow on someone’s face, there’s not going to be a bruise or a scratch. 

I had a woman who was spat at, it didn’t leave a mark on her. But when she put her arms out to push him away, he got a little scratch on his cheek, she was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm. So the police see a scratch, a mark, a drop of blood, and the woman will be the defendant. 

I’ve had other cases where the police are called. And if the woman is not particularly articulate or doesn’t speak English, then she can adequately communicate what’s happened. And she will often end up being the defendant in that situation, because the man might be able to explain it in a more convincing way. So I act for lots of women who are defendants, but when you actually talk to them, they are clearly the primary victim, and they may even have had AVOs against the man previously.

TARANG CHAWLA: Misidentification of the primary perpetrator is, sadly, not unusual. This is particularly true when it comes to protection orders. It’s estimated that between 20 and 25 percent of people under protection orders are women. Clearly, this doesn’t marry up with the data around gendered violence and it suggests victims are regularly being misidentified.

Despite the progress being made by police and the criminal justice system to better protect victim-survivors, there is still work to be done. This is particularly true for Indigenous Women – who face a higher likelihood of being abused, and their own unique challenges with police.

Here’s Assistant Commissioner Lauren Callaway again.

ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER LAUREN CALLAWAY: I suppose the institution and for some particular priority communities, that institution has not been a safe haven to run to when things have gone wrong. So we do a lot of work with trying to identify what those barriers are for our priority communities and I say priority communities. I talk about the Aboriginal families, culturally and linguistically diverse communities. People with a disability, children, adolescents, and the LGBTIQ community as well, so we recognize that they have special needs. 

And in every piece of work that we undertake, centrally the family violence command, we reach out to representatives from those communities to figure out ways in which we can encourage them to come forward and report. We’re available to hear their stories and some of their stories are very disappointing, but we acknowledge their experiences are valid and I feel as a police force, we have to judge ourselves not on how we gave the best service to the best victim who came in in a nice little neat package, but how we give service to the most difficult, complex, disadvantaged victim who may not even be able to come into a police station. How do we reach out to those people and get the message to them that if they do come forward, we will be there to  help you? 

TARANG CHAWLA: You’re going to hear from an expert in this space now. Her name is Dixie Link-Gordon. She’s a proud Gurang Gurang woman and a domestic violence educator with three decades of experience.

DIXIE LINK-GORDON: We have a big thing at the moment, the misidentification that we are actually, the people experiencing the horrible violence. And we may retaliate. I always tell a story of how this would look, it’d be like the police being called to a particular situation and the woman’s outside, just escaped from the house. She’s screaming and throwing maybe throwing rocks at the door or picking up something to throw it towards the house. And the police turn up, who do they arrest? They’ll arrest that woman, no matter the fact that she actually had to get out of the house from being strangled, or bashed down. So we’re trying to balance that too, let alone there’s this whole whole big situation that’s happening, the misidentification of women who experience violence, actually are being identified as the well, the perpetrator.

TARANG CHAWLA: Dixie is also the Coordinator of the First Nations Women’s Legal Program at Women’s Legal Service NSW and an Adjunct Professor at UNSW.

DIXIE LINK-GORDON: So you know, being able to get up, go into the police station and say, or even have a good support person, you really want well trained police officers take the reporting and very, very well trained, culturally appropriate, taking these and not going with some stereotype idea that a First Nations woman needs to be bashed or that’s how we define relationships, because we don’t. There has to be a lot of cultural education, cultural competence even, working with First Nation people and understanding how difficult it is for a woman to get into the cop shop and report it. How difficult it is to get to the next part, you know, hopefully, court support programs have got safe spaces.

TARANG CHAWLA: People of colour report having an especially difficult time getting help when they come forward with their experiences of abuse. For First Nations victim survivors, there’s an added layer of mistrust that comes from a long history of mistreatment at the hands of people in power.

DIXIE LINK-GORDON: For me, there’s the historical context of us, with family violence, domestic violence, community violence, they’re all interwoven with any community, any society that has certainly been impacted by colonisation. The violence that’s practiced down through time, and the mirrored behavior of the imperialist will come through on Indigenous people, First Nations people. It will impact and it will show itself and reveal itself in many ways. Are we good at reporting? No. You know, do we think it’s something that we’ve got to sort out ourselves? Yes, overwhelmingly, yes. 

TARANG CHAWLA: We know that violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women is not an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander problem. Violence is perpetrated by people of all cultural backgrounds. 

And yet, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women report experiencing violence in the previous 12 months at 3.1 times the rate of non-Indigenous women. They are 34 times more likely to be hospitalized due to domestic abuse… and they’re nearly 11 times more likely to die.

There are complex and multifactorial reasons behind this gap in experience for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women. Recent government reports have emphasised the unique barriers faced by Indigenous Australian victims in reporting domestic violence, including discriminatory practices and a lack of cultural competency by police. 

MOO BAULCH: I mean, I think, fundamentally, the way that we’ve set up the support service system is pretty flawed in Australia. 

TARANG CHAWLA: That’s Moo Baulch.  She’s spent years working in the domestic violence space, including as CEO of Domestic Violence NSW and a board member for the Luke Batty Foundation. She’s also the Director of Primary Prevention at frontline service Women’s and Girls’ Emergency Centre in inner city Sydney.

MOO BAULCH The police and justice, civil justice and criminal justice response is something that I think we have, we’ve been really afraid to actually talk about and question in Australia. So we’re, it’s interesting, I think the last probably three or four years, we’ve started to question a lot around the role of police, you know, broadly within our society, who are they policing for? What are they policing, but also within the intimate partner or gender based violence sphere, whose rules are they upholding? 

You know, we’ve ploughed a lot of money into police responses. And police have shifted, improve their responses significantly over the last, you know, 10 years, let’s say, particularly in New South Wales, I can talk to the experience here a bit more than other states and territories.

TARANG CHAWLA: Moo’s reflections align with the recommendations in the ANROWS 2020 research, which I’ve mentioned a few times during this podcast. ANROWS recommend that police need training on how to distinguish between coercive controlling violence and violence that is used to respond to ongoing abuse from the other person. Ongoing abuse that may not be physical.

While there is an ongoing national conversation about coercive controlling tactics – in many situations they are still too easy to disguise and too difficult to detect. An abuser who is financially controlling their partner may appear, to outsiders, like a family man who’s providing for his wife and children.

The question is not just police training – but who the ideal first responder should be. Moo Baulch says, when reflecting on the role of police, that…

MOO BAULCH: They’re not social workers, they’re not designed to do anything other than going out and enforce, you know, laws and orders, and the sorts of frameworks that they have at their disposal, and, for a range of different communities policing, and justice approaches is just not going to work, we’re not going to invite them into our family or private family business, we’re not going to invite them into our community business, because there is such a level of trust missing. 

TARANG CHAWLA: Nina felt consistently let down by police. And her experience lines up with the evidence. A NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research study of 300 victims attending domestic violence services in 2013 found that only half of victims reported their most recent incident to the police. 

The primary barrier to reporting was an expectation on the part of the victims that police either do not understand or are not proactive in handling domestic violence matters. However, Nina says that she did feel heard when she met with a female police officer… 

JULIE AYLWARD: So I suppose for us, the biggest, the biggest barrier tends to be social ones, where people, by the time it gets to court, we all know that a fair way down the track from when the actual offense happened. And if you’re talking about domestic violence, there are so many, so many competing issues for those complainants so that when that’s coupled with the delay, by the time it comes around to court, sometimes it can be just too hard. 

TARANG CHAWLA: Julie Aylward is a Crown Prosecutor who has had first hand experience with countless family violence cases. 

JULIE AYLWARD: Obviously, domestic violence is very complex. And there are a lot of women who are reliant on that person who is abusing them, and they have children with them. But it’s also – and things may have settled down a bit, well they think things have settled down a bit in that break between the offending and court – but there’s also depending on, on who it is, we have a lot of women who have a real mistrust of police, which may have come from their own personal experiences. Mistrust of police and the concern if they have children with this person, that their children might be taken away from them. 

TARANG CHAWLA: Police play a critical role in the justice system. They’re often the first responders and that makes them the gatekeepers. They’re the ones being called to the scene of family violence incidents. And yet the levels of trust between police and a community can be wildly different depending on location, race, religion and socio-economic status of that community. 

JULIE AYLWARD: And we know that there is a cycle with domestic violence that children who grow up in homes where there is domestic violence, that is what they know. And then it’s often repeated. So there is a genuine concern about the involvement of child safety for those people. And so then they if things get really bad, they may make that complaint to police. 

TARANG CHAWLA: The odds of an arrest being made, when someone does make a complaint to police, often rests on the presence of physical injuries. If a victim has suffered visible injuries, police are up to four times more likely to arrest the perpetrator than if no injuries are apparent.

JULIE AYLWARD: But it’s the follow up with having to come to court, whether it be a year down the track and give evidence that can present some real barriers. They change their mind, they feel there’s been a lot of involvement with that offender in the meantime, whether there’s a domestic violence order in place or not. You see a lot of people still have contact. Sometimes they weren’t the ones who made the application for the domestic violence order. It’s a police protection order that’s put in place because they won’t make it themselves. And even though they want that protection, they don’t seem to want to be the catalyst for that change.

TARANG CHAWLA: Prosecutors like Julie have to weigh up an incredibly complex set of factors and questions.

JULIE AYLWARD: It does put us in difficult, it puts us both in a difficult position, because you want to balance the need to prosecute that offender, knowing what has happened with re-traumatising a victim, who has said now that they don’t want to come to court. So you know, you have to try and appeal to that victim without making it worse for them. And that can be a difficult thing to do.

TARANG CHAWLA: The Australian Institute of Criminology has found growing evidence in Australia that specialised police teams can make a difference on the reporting of family violence. Second responder programs on victim reporting behaviour can also have an impact. 

These are interagency teams which follow up with victim-survivors like Nina who come into contact with law enforcement. Their role is a special and important one. They educate and empower victim-survivors shepherding them through an unbelievably complex system to reach a meaningful outcome.

Indigenous Police Liaison Officers are another positive evolution of the system.They directly influence the likelihood that family violence is reported. They work to raise awareness of the consequences of violence and abuse, and support women and children who are at risk through community education. 

The global pandemic appears to have exacerbated the scourge of family violence.

When Australians were told to stay home, to stay safe, there were undoubtedly victims who were robbed of their support networks and they were left, trapped at home, alone with their abusers.

Research also shows that family violence increases during times of community stress, chaos or fear, all of which we’ve all been living with since March of 2020.

ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER LAUREN CALLAWAY: Over the last 12 months, we’ve hit 92,000 reports, which is up 7000 on the previous year. And it’s accepted that it’s now around between 40 to 60 per cent, of police officers response. And it also means that we’re going to an incident every six minutes.

But you could pretty much say along the eastern seaboard, which are the most populous states that we’re either under or just exceeding over 100,000 incidents per state. I mean, those statistics don’t surprise me. I think over the last few years, we’ve done a lot of work to reduce the stigma of reporting family violence, we knew it was underreported, we know it continues to be under-reported in certain groups. 

But I think the old fashioned notion of it being a private matter, and that you don’t share that with others. I think it’s fair to say that the community’s rejecting that position now, and, and it’s quite acceptable to not only report family violence, whether that be to the police, but also to seek help from the sector, and address those underlying issues.

TARANG CHAWLA: The past decade has seen the number of women seeking support to escape violent relationships and contacting police increase significantly. That’s good news. And we must be careful not to mistake those increased reporting numbers as meaning an increase in violence itself.

Instead, it’s a reminder that empowering women to ask for help is critically important work. But just as critical as ensuring that when women do ask for help, is making sure that help is available.

I want to introduce you to Professor Kerry Carrington from the Queensland University of Technology’s Centre for Justice. In 2015, she visited Argentina to study their women-only police stations.  

PROFESSOR KERRY CARRINGTON: Argentina is ranked equal one in the world for women safe safety and health and security, Australia’s about 155. It comes from the World Economic Forum.

I can also tell you that Argentina is a much more gender equitable country. And these factors all will probably assist in reducing rates of gender violence. Also can tell you that the rate of femicide in Argentina is one of the lowest in the world. It’s definitely the lowest in Latin America. And it is on par with Oceania, the region of the world where we are but for a country, with its socio-demographics, it’s rate of femicide is extraordinarily low.

Whilst we have about 25% of sworn police officers female, that’s nowhere near enough to change the culture. Because you need closer to 50 to really change the culture. You think about it, these are institutions that for over a century excluded women, and then when they included women, they included them on their terms, and they allowed women entry into policing into very specified roles. And then until very recently, we’ve had very few women in leadership. 

They’re really institutions of the past. But they have enormous political power at state government level because of law and order politics. So that is the problem.

TARANG CHAWLA: Could this be the change we need to really make a difference in Australian policing?

PROFESSOR KERRY CARRINGTON: So my solution is you create a separate police force with a separate union, and that police force is the one that responds to victims of gender violence. And that’s what they did in Argentina. And the other thing they did in Argentina is that that separate police force has their own Commissioner and their own Commissioner, who’s a woman, reports to the Minister for women, as well as the Minister for security. So they have dual reporting lines.

So you create a completely separate police station. And so you have, that’s the common police station, but this police station does not deal with criminal matters. So when you walk in that door you don’t need to be frightened that the police are going to pin you with a warrant for an unpaid fine or a fine for driving. unregistered vehicle or something like that. 

And then also a lot of women are very fearful of having their children removed. So that’s why they have to be separate, completely separate so that people don’t associate them with the negative authority of the state with the way in which police can use that against members of their community or their family.

TARANG CHAWLA: Perhaps Nina’s story would have been different, if she’d had support from an officer like Lauren Callaway. Or if she’d had access to the kind of policing model Professor Kerry Carrington saw firsthand in Argentina.

Nina and Joe’s legal matters were still before, or waiting to be heard in, the courts when we recorded this episode. There are hundreds of criminal cases all across Australia that have been delayed by the pandemic – including Nina’s.

On top of that, Nina is also trying to find out why her case went so wrong… with help from her lawyer.

NINA: She’s the one that made me realise this is not okay. Because I just, I don’t know, I don’t, I’m not a police officer. I don’t really know how that whole system works. So I just thought that they didn’t have enough evidence or there must have been some valid reason for why that happened.

TARANG: No matter the outcome in all of those cases, there is sufficient evidence that Australian policing of family violence could be improved. There are new models, new approaches and new training being undertaken in local jurisdictions and around the world that are cause for hope.

Our systems need to meet the needs of diverse and complicated communities while earning their trust and their belief at the same time… and so do the police force that protects them.

On the next episode of There’s No Place Like Home, we’ll meet Human Rights Activist and survivor, Khadija Gbla, and learn about the double bind that too often faces women of colour. 

KHADIJA GBLA: So the aunties and uncles are barging into my house, calling me, they’re saying, ‘you know they’re gonna use this against us, don’t you? You know, they’re gonna say we are violent now. You know, they’re gonna say our men are violent. You do know that, that’s what you’re doing. Khadija, that’s what you’re doing. You’re hurting that boy, you’re gonna ruin his life.’

TARANG: See you then.

OUTRO: There’s No Place Like Home is a Future Women podcast supported by our proud partner, Commonwealth Bank, supporting long term financial independence for victim-survivors through CommBank Next Chapter.

For help or advice, please check the show notes for phone numbers for confidential support.
If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate and review. It will help these important stories to reach more peoples’ ears For more information about There’s No Place Like Home, or to join the movement, please head to futurewomen.com.

This episode was produced by Jamila Rizvi, Sally Spicer, Tarang Chawla, Fleur Bitcon, Ella Jackson, Ruby Leahy Gatfield, India Bailey and Kate Leaver. Editing by Bad Producer Productions. Artwork by Patti Andrews.