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What is the Premier’s Priority?

The Premier’s Priority for reducing domestic violence reoffending aims to decrease the number of domestic violence reoffenders by 25 percent by 2023. The priority was first established by the Premier in 2015 and was extended in 2019.

The NSW Government has invested more than $431 million over four years to deliver initiatives that work towards meeting the priority. Based on current figures, achieving a 25 per cent reduction in domestic violence reoffenders will mean approximately 450 fewer reoffenders by 2023.

Domestic and family violence (DFV) is a complex social problem. Our approach to reduce domestic and family violence reoffending protects and supports victims. It also holds offenders to account by tackling the attitudes and behaviours that lead to reoffending.

Reducing domestic violence reoffending is just one of the ways that we are addressing DFV the state. Find out more in the Other DFV initiatives section.

What is reoffending?

Reoffending is when a person is charged with a DFV assault and is charged with a second DFV assault within 12 months. Second DFV offences are also likely to happen soon after the initial abuse. Therefore, it is critical that we focus on changing behaviours and hold DFV offenders to account.

What are we doing to meet the priority?

The Reducing Domestic Violence Reoffending Program is a comprehensive, multi-agency program that sets out how we are working towards the priority. It focuses on changing DFV offending behaviour and holding DFV offenders to account.

The program is made up of individual interventions that concentrate on working with DFV offenders. Evidence suggests that working with offenders can improve victim safety and protect our community from the serious harm caused by DFV reoffending.

Some of the interventions include:

  • Mens Behaviour Change Programs – supporting offenders to recognise their violent behaviour and to develop strategies to stop using violence.
  • ENGAGE – engaging offenders early through voluntary intervention. This program aims to address a gap in early intervention options for DFV perpetrators. It is available to persons with a DFV offence or an ADVO, or referred by non-court stakeholders where DFV is an issue. It involves participants attending a free six hour workshop delivered by NGOs registered to deliver MBCPs; and being offered referrals to support services and longer term Men’s Behaviour Change Programs (MBCP).
  • DV Electronic Monitoring – monitoring DV offenders via GPS, to make sure they are not in proximity of the victim-survivor. Where appropriate, a matched GPS device is also available to the victim-survivor and can be used on a voluntary basis.
  • What’s Your Plan – increasing compliance with Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders among Aboriginal defendants. Defendants who attend the program meet with an Aboriginal Community & Client Support Officer to help them understand their ADVO conditions. Together, they develop a strategy to help them comply with their ADVO, address any obstacles they are facing and learn how to take positive steps to change their behaviour.
  • ReINVEST – providing offenders with a common antidepressant to reduce violent, impulsive behaviour. This is a world first clinical trial and delivered in partnership with the Kirby Institute.
  • EQUIPS – working with medium to high risk offenders to complete a self-management plan to reduce their offending behaviour. Practitioners work with offenders using therapeutic programs, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

How are we tracking?

We have made strong progress towards the target and have seen a decrease in reoffenders since the priority was introduced in 2015. The number of reoffenders has dropped from 1,814 in the year to December 2015 to 1,778 in the year to December 2019.

We have also implemented most interventions, at scale, across the state and some of the more innovative interventions are on track with evaluations underway.

We will continue to deliver this comprehensive program that changes offender behaviour, holds offenders to account and increases victim-survivor safety.

Other DFV initiatives

The NSW Government is committed to stopping domestic violence and supporting victims and families. We have invested in a range of programs and services to support victims and give them the best possible chances for recovery. Some of these include:

Domestic and Family Violence support

There is never an excuse for domestic violence. If you or someone you know is at risk or experiencing DFV, help is available. Free call the NSW Domestic Violence Line on 1800 65 64 63. Calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you or someone you know are in immediate danger, call the Police on 000.

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Last updated: 21 May 2020