Do female family violence abusers ‘get a free pass’?

Young Couple in Conflict [Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at]

In a recent article that has conjured up much controversy, former Queensland senator, Bill O’Chee, has cited statistics from the Australian Institute of Criminology to support his claim that female perpetrators of family violence ‘usually get a free pass’.

The statistics highlight that between 2008-2010, more than 45% of family-related murders of children were committed by the Mother.

The former senator’s claims were supported by “evidence” from a solicitor friend and former police prosecutor, who stated that during his 10 years on the force, he had never charged a woman for family violence. This was despite one-third of family violence victims being men.

Dr Elizabeth Celi, psychologist, also expressed that whilst there is a growing public awareness of domestic violence being committed against women, the discussion simultaneously failed to address the fact that women may also be the perpetrators. Dr Celi’s focus remained the safety of children who are adversely affected by violent and abusive behaviour regardless of which parent it stems from.

If you or someone you know is experiencing difficulties in the home relating to the behaviour of one or more parents, don’t hesitate to contact Rowan Skinner & Associates. Melbourne family lawyers in Clifton Hill today. We offer a confidential discussion as to how we may be able to assist you.


Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at