Through the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and Their Children 2010–2022 (the National Plan), all Australian governments made a long-term commitment to ensure that women and their children live free from violence. The first edition of Change the story was developed as a priority action under the National Plan’s Second Action Plan 2013–16, and was adopted as Australia’s national policy framework for prevention by all Australian governments under the Third Action Plan 2016–19.
The aim of this framework (in both its first and second editions) is the primary prevention of violence against women – that is, to change the underlying social conditions that produce and drive this violence, and that excuse, justify or even promote it, to prevent it from occurring in the first place. More detail about primary prevention can be found on page 55.
Australia still has a long way to go to prevent violence against women. A sustained reduction in the prevalence of violence against women will not be achieved without an ongoing, genuinely national, evidence-based and shared approach. This resource provides the framework to guide and support continued development and strengthening of prevention approaches in Australia. It explains what drives violence against women, and, most importantly, it outlines what is needed to prevent this violence. It details the elements of an effective national approach to prevention, points to the overarching infrastructure and the specific actions that are required, and it outlines the unique roles that different stakeholders need to play as part of this shared national approach.