This report presents the findings from a community survey, conducted on behalf of VicHealth in 2006. The survey aimed to gauge contemporary attitudes held by the community in Victoria towards violence against women, and to provide indicators of change in community attitudes since 1995. The report also presents relevant findings from focus group research which was conducted both within the general community and with Indigenous members of the community to complement the survey research and scope out some of the issues relating to violence against women in more depth.
While the findings indicate that the majority of community members do not overall hold violence-supportive attitudes, attitudes do not necessarily translate into behaviour. What was measured was what people said they believed or perceived, not actual behaviour or the link between the two. The survey indicated that despite improvements, attitudes that condone, trivialise or work against addressing violence persist. There is a need to complement current efforts to support those affected by violence with strategies to prevent violence before it occurs. This suggests the need for a comprehensive approach to primary prevention.
Paper one of the Violence Against Women Community Attitudes Project.