On Friday 13th November Deakin Criminologist Dr Kate Fitz-Gibbon delivered a plenary presentation as part of the University College Cork (UCC) one day conference, ‘Domestic Violence Laws and Processes: Effecting Change – Safeguarding Families (Exploring the Options in Ireland)’. The conference was organised by Dr Louise Crowley (School of Law, UCC).
Kate’s paper – Domestic Violence policy and reform in Australia – provided an examination of recent reviews and reforms of domestic violence policies across Australian state and territory jurisdictions. Focusing on the recent period since the 2014 declaration of family violence as a ‘national emergency’, Kate’s presentation summarised recent efforts at reviewing and recommending reform of responses to domestic violence in Australia, at a state and national level. In particular, the presentation provided an overview of what a ‘perpetrator-focused’ approach looks like in Australia and what might be the strengths and weaknesses of adopting such an approach.
Other speakers involved in the conference included Ailish Glennon (Irish Probation Service), Tom Meagher (White Ribbon Ireland), Dr Margaret O’Keeffe (Cork Institute of Technology) and Rory McCrae (Working with Men, Edinburgh).
The conference was attended by 120 attendees, including representatives from the Director of Public Prosecutions, domestic violence advocacy workers, police officers and probation services.
The conference was covered in the Irish Examiner on Saturday 14th November. The article, by Noel Baker, provides an overview of some of the key policy issues and opportunities for reform that were identified over the course of the conference. Kate was cited in the article advocating for greater judicial education on domestic violence.
While visiting University College Cork Kate also presented a lecture to the Masters Family Law students and Faculty.