The net effect of the recommendations will be that:
- consistency in understanding and application of the law in the areas under review will be fostered by consistency of definitions, underpinned by education, training and awareness, including in service delivery areas;
- those experiencing family violence will have greater self-agency by being provided information about access to services and pathways to particular benefits or supports in the areas under review;
- there will be more appropriate identification of, and responses to, the disclosure of family violence in a range of contexts;
- decision makers will be better trained and have access to material that reflects the nature, features and dynamics of family violence leading to a greater consistency and fairness in decision making; and
- ultimately, the safety—physical, economic and financial—of people experiencing family violence will be improved.
As noted at the outset, the referral of this Inquiry to the ALRC is part of the Australian Government’s goal ‘to reduce all violence in our communities’. To meet the challenges of such a goal requires enormous co-operation, trust, respect, patience, commitment—and leadership. In this Inquiry, the ALRC has undertaken consultations nationwide and received over 160 submissions from a wide range of stakeholders.
The expectations of the work of the ALRC through now two major family violence inquiries—and that of the Australian, state and territory governments in response—are also considerable.