DV Vic made a submission to the Australian Law Reform Commission’s Review of the Family Law System: Discussion Paper. We reiterated the need to transform the family law system’s culture to one that meets the needs of survivors of family violence and their children.
We supported proposals that will help facilitate a coordinated trauma-informed response to the diverse and intersecting needs of family law system users, especially victim survivors, and discussed what else should be done to move away from an adversarial system that can replicate the dynamics of family violence.
We emphasised that achieving any cultural change in Australian family law will require the Australian Government to commit to adequately funding the family law system, particularly to providing affordable legal representation and specialist support to victim/survivors of family violence. This funding must also be supported by a commitment to co-designing these reforms with those currently disadvantaged by family law processes, such as women with disabilities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and lesbian, gay bi-sexual, transgender and/or intersex women.