Former Australian Federal Minister for Communications Malcolm Turnbull, centre. Mr Turnbull successfullly challenged Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott for the Australian the Prime Ministership. Photo: AAP Image/Sam Mooy

Domestic violence national shame: PM

Violence against women is one of Australia’s great shames, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says.

The prime minister has unveiled a $100 million package to tackle the issue, including measures to better train frontline officers and funding for 20,000 mobile phones for at-risk women.

“Violence against women is one of the great shames of Australia. It is a national disgrace,” he told reporters in Melbourne on Thursday, noting 63 women had been killed by their partners or a family member this year.

Mr Turnbull said Australia faced a challenge in addressing the consequences of violence and making women safer on the streets, at home and online.

Australia should be known as a nation that respects women.

“Disrespecting women does not always result in violence against women,” he said.

“But all violence against women begins with disrespecting women.”

Leaders had to make it a national objective to make sure Australia was more respecting of women, Mr Turnbull said.

“We have to make it as though it was un-Australian to disrespect women,” he said, noting this would be a big cultural shift.

The prime minister cited research showing one in four young men thought it was acceptable to drunkenly slap their girlfriends.

“Let’s make it our resolution that Australia will be known as a nation, as a people, as a society that respects women,” he said.


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