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Tuesday, 7 February 2017
Page: 196

Domestic and Family Violence

(Question No. 580)


Ms Butler asked the Prime Minister, in writing, on 10 November 2016:

In respect of the Government's announcement on 28 October 2016 that it would commit $10 million of funding for one year to respond to 'revenge porn' and online abuse, (a) why is the first measure focused on developing educational resources to shift attitudes and behaviours about pornography, and (b) what measures will be taken to educate offenders on the seriousness of their conduct, rather than focusing unduly on the actions of the victim (i.e., categorising their conduct as pornography and encouraging victim blaming).


Mr Porter: The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(a) One in five Australian women has experienced sexual violence since the age of 15, and women aged 18-24 are more likely than other women to have experienced sexual violence.

There is growing evidence to suggest that exposure to violent pornography can lead to violence supportive attitudes and that girls often report feeling pressured into unwanted sexual activities. In addition, there is anecdotal evidence to suggest that child-on-child sexual violence has also been increasing and that some children are copying behaviour to which they have been exposed.

In response to this growing concern, the Government has committed $3 million to develop information and educational resources to counter the impact of pornography on young people. It is envisaged that this material will teach young people about healthy and respectful relationships. Funding includes developmental research and consultation, which will inform the approach.

(b) The $10 million announced on 28 October 2016 is for three years (2016-17 - 2018-19) and supports a number of measures including:

1. countering the impact of pornography with targeted information and educational resources to shift attitudes and behaviours in young people;

2. establishing a national online complaints mechanism to empower victims to report the non-consensual sharing of intimate images and access immediate and tangible support; and

3. identifying gaps in, and impediments to, information sharing about victims and perpetrators of domestic, sexual and family violence between jurisdictions.

The national online complaints mechanism will provide assistance to victims to have intimate images removed by working with internet and social media providers.

As announced on 23 November 2016, the Department of Communications and the Arts will undertake a public consultation process on a proposed civil penalties regime targeted at both perpetrators and at sites that host intimate images and videos shared without consent. In parallel, the Commonwealth Government is initiating work with the states and territories through COAG to develop principles for nationally consistent state-based criminal offences relating to the non-consensual sharing of intimate images.