Chair of the Foundation to Prevent Violence Against Women and their Children, Natasha Stott Despoja, addressed the National Press Club last week.
Dr Greg Canning, a general medical practitioner and high-profile advocate for men and boys, has published an open letter in response, detailing the one-sided approach to violence-prevention taken by the Foundation.
“By quoting selective statistics on female victimisation only, while excluding equally shocking data for male victimisation, Stott Despoja and the Foundation are misleading Australians about the levels of violence in society. Telling half truths seems to be incompatible with the principles they believe are critical to reducing violence against women and their children - respect between the sexes and gender equality,” Dr Canning said.
Whilst happy to quote that 23% of young Australians had witnessed physical domestic violence against their mothers, Stott Despoja ignored that the same survey found an almost identical proportion (22%) of young people were aware of domestic violence against their fathers or step-fathers by their mothers or step-mothers.
Most importantly the same survey found that more common and damaging than either male-to-female or female-to-male unilateral violence was mutual (or reciprocal) couple violence with the authors concluding “the most severe disruption on all available indicators occurred in households where couple violence was reported.”
While citing that 89 Australian women were killed by their partners between 2008 and 2010, Stott Despoja ignored the fact that during the same period, of the 194 victims who were killed by an offender with whom they shared a principal domestic relationship, 39% of these victims were male, while 61% were female.
“The willful denial of such evidence by the domestic violence sector, in my view, will continue to make the goal of lives free from violence unattainable for men, women and children,” said Dr Canning.
Dr Canning is calling upon the Australian Government to take action to stop violence against all Australians, regardless of gender, geography, socio-economic status, age, ability, sexual preference, culture, race or religion.
Dr Greg Canning 0438 349 395 / [email protected]
Dr Greg CanningP: 0438 349 395
M: 0438 349 395