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Tom Conway. Photo by Jake Lynch/BRHS.

Champions 4 Change

Champions 4 Change

Tom Conway. Photo by Jake Lynch/BRHS.

Bairnsdale blokes start new group to confront violence against women

By Jake Lynch

It was not something he had seen before.

As a young Occupational Therapist just beginning his career, Tom Conway remembers vividly the first few times he saw people present to the hospital that appeared to be victims of family violence.

Tom acknowledges he is fortunate. He grew up in a family where violence and harassment was just not a part of his life experience. It wasn’t something that affected his friends or his peers.

“But working in a hospital, I began to see it,” he says. “So many of the people that access our services, that come to the hospital seeking our help, are in a vulnerable position. What I saw, and what I see, in my line of work tells me that family violence is still an issue in our community.”

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Tom is part of a generation that came of age in a time where long-accepted social norms relating to the treatment of women have been upended, rejected and re-examined. Sparked by historic movements like #MeToo, in Australia and across the world the issue of gender imbalance is under scrutiny like never before.

But all the while, women and children, primarily, continue to suffer abuse from male family members and partners. News reports of violence against women are still almost a daily occurrence.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare estimates that 1 in 6 Australian women (and 1 in 16 men) have been subjected to physical and/or sexual violence by their partner.

This story continues HERE. Find out about Champions 4 Change.

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