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What is domestic and family violence?

Domestic and family violence happens when one person in a relationship uses violence or abuse to control the other person. Domestic and family violence is usually an ongoing pattern of behaviour aimed at controlling a partner through fear.

Regardless of whether you are a young person or an older person, whether you have been in your relationship for many years or just a short time, it's important to evaluate whether your relationship continues to be safe and respectful.

You have the right to:

  • express your opinions and have them respected (even if your partner does not agree with you)
  • take the relationship at your own pace
  • have your feelings about any sexual activities respected and accepted
  • have your physical and emotional needs treated as equally important to your partner
  • not be abused.

Abuse can include:

  • emotional abuse (e.g. criticising your personality, looks or parenting skills)
  • verbal abuse (e.g. yelling, shouting and swearing at you)
  • stalking and harassment (e.g. constantly following or phoning you, cyberstalking or tracking you through social media or Global Positioning Systems (GPS)).
  • financial abuse (e.g. not giving you enough money to survive, or forcing you to hand over your money)
  • physical abuse (e.g. slapping, hitting or pushing)
  • damaging property to frighten you (e.g. punching holes in walls or breaking furniture)
  • social abuse (e.g. not letting you see your friends or family, isolating you from people you care about)
  • spiritual abuse (e.g. forcing you to attend religious activities or stopping you from taking part in your religious or cultural practices)
  • sexual abuse (e.g. forcing or coercing you to have sex)
  • depriving you of the necessities of life such as food, shelter and medical care.

Every year people die from domestic and family violence, even when there has been no history of physical violence. All forms of violence and controlling and obsessive behaviours should be taken seriously.

How to get help

In an emergency call the Police on Triple Zero (000).

DVConnect Womensline
Phone: 1800 811 811
(24 hours, 7 days a week)
Womensline helps women to obtain safe refuge accommodation, confidential counselling and referral to other services.

DVConnect Mensline
Phone: 1800 600 636
(9am to midnight, 7 days a week)
Mensline provides confidential counselling, information and referral to men affected by domestic and family violence.

Kids Helpline
Phone: 1800 55 1800
(24 hours, 7 days a week)

Lifeline
Phone: 13 11 14
(24 hour Crisis Counselling Line)

More information on domestic and family violence, including additional information on how to get help, can be found on the Queensland Government website.

Queensland Ambulance Service Commitment

The Queensland Ambulance Service is proudly undertaking the White Ribbon Australia Workplace Accreditation Program to further support our employees who are affected by domestic and family violence. The program recognises workplaces that are taking active steps to stop violence against women, accrediting them as a White Ribbon Workplace.

The program builds on existing gender equality and diversity initiatives, providing the tools to strengthen a culture of respect and gender equality at all levels of the organisation.  The program supports organisations to respond to and prevent violence against women, whether it occurs inside or outside the organisation, through supporting women experiencing violence, holding those who commit violence or abuse to account, supporting all employees to challenge inappropriate behaviour and strengthening gender equality within the broader community.

A number of staff within the Queensland Ambulance Service have taken the White Ribbon Australia Oath, to ‘stand up, speak out and act to prevent men’s violence against women’.

The Queensland Ambulance Service will continue to promote positive and respectful relationships in an effort to reduce the negative impacts domestic and family violence has in our communities.

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Last updated 29 May 2017

Proudly working with White Ribbon to create a safer workplace. Australia's campaign to stop violence against women