​Statement by Bishop Philip Huggins, Chair, Melbourne Anglican Social Responsibilities Committee

New crime statistics, released this week, show family violence still covers the bulk of crime against persons. Family violence accounts for 38.6% of all crimes against people.

We can but imagine the effect this violence is having on women and children. The suffering is immense and intergenerational. These statistics of rising family violence require us to develop better preventative strategies. How can we make such violence unthinkable?

Attention to what we think is crucial because what we think becomes what we say and do. We become what we think. Our thinking, our inner thoughts, shape our character, and thus, collectively, our social destiny.

Those who still think it is OK to be violent in word and deed towards women, and other races, will find it spills into their words and actions.

The thinking which leads to violence is affected by the “normalising” of violence in entertainment. It is affected by unequal power in relationships. It may also be affected by rigidity in gender stereotypes.

These shocking crime statistics will not shift until such matters as these are addressed. The primary prevention of family violence, as well as racial violence, begins in our own heads!

See the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne’s report on a pilot project to prevent violence against women at www.melbourneanglican.org.au/women

Bishop Philip Huggins
M: 0418 799 515
T: 03 9653 4243

Roland Ashby, Communications Director
M: 0418 342 561
T: 03 9653 4215

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