ALRC Report 30 (tabled March 1986) examined the issue of domestic violence within the Australian Capital Territory, focusing exclusively on incidents involving adult people who were married or living in a de facto relationship.
Legal institutions’ responses to instances of domestic violence had been criticised on two grounds. First, police were seen as taking a dismissive attitude towards complaints. Second, the sanctions imposed by the courts were seen as ineffective. There was also considerable uncertainty concerning the extent of powers available to law enforcement officers, and the circumstances in which they should be exercised.
However, a legal response to the issue, consisting largely of imposing sanctions on perpetrators, was not sufficient in itself. Consequently, the terms of reference directed the ALRC to investigate domestic violence in its social context.
A draft Bill is included in the report.
View ALRC Report 30 in HTMLon the AustLII website.