Open a Domestic Violence Refuge for Men in Western Australia

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When domestic violence is spoken of, the average person automatically pictures a male perpetrator and a female victim. Although this is often the case, it is also common for it to be the other way around. From a young age, kids are shown that violence against men is a joke. It is normalised in the media, from kids movies to music film clips to videos shown and laughed about on social media. Due to this, male victims of domestic violence are afraid to speak up as they are scared that no one will believe them, people will treat it as a joke, or they will be treated like less of a man. As not enough males have come forward, the government has not put any funding into housing for male domestic violence victims; there are a couple of housing options for young domestic violence victims such as Foyer Oxford (under 20 y/o), however these houses are not male specific, accepting both genders. There are ZERO gender-specific domestic violence refuges for males in Western Australia, and ZERO domestic violence refuges for males over the age of 20 in Western Australia. Many men over the age of 20 who are experiencing domestic violence have the option to stay at home with an abusive partner or to go to a homeless shelter which does not have the same services as a womens' domestic violence refuge such as keeping the victims safe from their partners. 

There are many statistics from all over Australia regarding domestic violence rates. It is believed that 1 in 3 victims of domestic violence are male (if you want more information on statistics, is a great place to start). Although the rate of male victims is less than female victims, two things must still be remembered. First, that although statistics try to be as accurate as possible, they cannot capture every truth that is a part of the struggle of domestic violence, and cannot record the men that do not come forward due to reasons stated above. Second, although the rate of male victims is not as high as female victims, it is still a prominent issue in not only Australian society but all over the world. 

I believe that services for male domestic violence victims need to start coming into line with the services provided to female domestic violence victims. Although there is so much work that needs to be done in regards to this issue, I believe that having a place for these victims to go, where they can have access to the help that they need and be surrounded by others that are going through the same struggle as them, will be an incredible start. I hope that you sign this petition and open your heart to all male victims in our communities.