A gathering to honour women murdered in acts of domestic violence was held at Fotheringham Park on Thursday, November 25.
'Honouring Murdered Women' was first held in 2019 and is intended as an annual event. Last year it was cancelled because of COVID-19 restrictions.
Participants wore black and were invited to lay a posy at an angel's feet. The name of every woman killed in 2021 was read with a short bio, accompanied by violin playing by Heather McLaughlin.
The event was organised by the Save Our Refuge Street Theatre group.
The event marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. It comes on day one of the global 6 Days of Activism campaign, which runs until World Human Rights Day (Friday, December 10). The campaign calls for much-needed change in the fight against gender-based violence.
The NSW Police Force is commencing a proactive state-wide operation targeting perpetrators of domestic and family violence to coincide with the 16 Days of Activism campaign.
The NSW Police Force is supporting the campaign through proactive policing operations, with specialist officers also taking part in awareness-raising events, with some regional operations extending beyond the 16 days.
NSW Police Corporate Sponsor for Domestic and Family Violence, Assistant Commissioner Leanne McCusker, said it was unfortunate COVID-19 had caused the cancellation of some larger events that would raise community awareness, but the NSW Police Force's focus on this crime type has not wavered.
"While we might not be able to host large events like community walks, it is vital that we continue to check on the safety of victims and their children," said Assistant Commissioner McCusker.
"Police remain committed to preventing domestic and family violence, supporting victims, and ensuring perpetrators are held accountable 365 days of the year."
During the state-wide operation, police will implement a number of strategies to disrupt and prevent recidivist offending and ensure the safety of victims. This includes Apprehended Domestic Violence Order compliance checks, proactive checks targeting known offenders and providing additional support to at-risk victims, with assistance from the Domestic Violence High Risk Offender Teams (DV HROT).
"Police do not just wait for reports of incidents to happen; we actively engage in proactive policing initiatives to identify, assess, and target individuals who are suspected of being repeat offenders to reduce crime," added Assistant Commissioner McCusker.
"Our message is that gender-based violence is everyone's business. There are no innocent bystanders when it comes to domestic and family violence. Community attitudes and changing behaviours will make the biggest different in reducing incidences of not only violence but discrimination towards women."
If you, or anyone you know has experienced, or is at risk of, family and domestic violence, contact your local police. In an emergency, call Triple Zero (000).
Support is available via the following helplines - Domestic Violence helpline 1800 65 64 63, 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) or MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78.
For more information on domestic and family violence or links to useful resources, please visit; www.police.nsw.gov.au/crime/domestic_and_family_violence.
For more information about the 16 Days of Activism, please visit: https://iwda.org.au/what-are-the-16-days-of-activism-and-why-should-you-care/