Health Minister says lockdown restriction prompting rise in Queensland’s domestic trauma cases

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Family violence is on the rise in Queensland, likely related to isolation policy which forces victims to stay at home with their abusers. The Queensland government will provide an extra $2 million to family violence services.

“I’ve been disturbed to hear from our emergency department staff that the reduction in sporting injuries and road trauma has been partially offset by trauma caused by domestic and family violence,” Queensland Health Minister Steven Miles said.

“Of course that’s terribly disturbing for the people affected and for our hospital staff who deal with the aftermath of it.

“Anything we can do to address this increase in domestic and family violence during the pandemic, I think is really important.”

Although the government is working to get vulnerable families into emergency accommodation, Minister for Prevention of Family Violence Di Farmer said that people would be reluctant to use government provided accommodation during the pandemic.

Ms Farmer said the impact of perpetrators being couped up at home, coupled with the likely financial losses the pandemic has caused, creates a “perfect storm” leading to abuse scenarios.

“We know that perpetrators who are already violent will be even angrier as a likelihood from financial loss and cabin fever,” she said.

“Lifeline’s reporting to us that in general, people are more on edge and angrier and we’ve seen a 70 per cent increase in alcohol consumption — all of these things are creating a perfect storm at which the victim is at heightened risk.

“Service providers have reported to us a dramatic increase in the brutality and severity of attacks.”

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