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Exploring the ownership of family safety

ECLISPE says that the coroner, in this situation, got it right: “The safety plan was effectively imposed on [the woman] in a situation where she was disempowered, distressed and understandably distrustful. She had no genuine say in its terms.”


Why do our safety plans continue to revolve around the primary victim making change?

Why does the primary victim have to take responsibility to reduce the risk of harm of someone else's behaviour?

Why is the focus not on the harmful behaviour and the person causing it?

We know that coercive control and family violence entraps and restricts primary victims. This entrapment is not a choice, it is a consequence of abuse. Primary victims do nothing wrong, and yet people continue to place the responsibility for change in their hands.


Was it her responsibility to keep her child safe or was it his responsibility to not harm the child in the first place?

Let's create some accountability around family violence offending and place the onus for change at the feet of those committing the harm.  If he wasn't hurting the child, she would never have had to try and keep him safe, let's put our attention where it should be.


If there is a single person reading this that says "why didn't she keep her child safe?" instead of saying "why did he kill this child?" - please feel free to seek some opportunities to better understand family violence. The moment we victim blame we are invisibilising the violence.

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