Prevention toolkit for local government
Run a campaign
Many local governments start violence against women prevention initiatives by implementing popular awareness raising campaigns or facilitating educational events with local domestic and family violence and other specialist services. This is a great way to start. To see a reduction in violence against women rates, a whole-of -community approach is most effective, one that includes programming and activities that address the drivers of violence targeting different groups (e.g. men, people from non-English speaking backgrounds etc.) at different stages in their lives.
Local governments can make a difference even with little financial support. Some suggestions for low cost, simple initiatives include:
- Identify what your Mayor or Chief Executive Officer’s thoughts are on violence against women and request that they conduct an interview on community radio or support a media/mayoral release.
- Develop local violence against women statistics into posters or presentations that will draw attention within your council as well as from the community which will encourage more people to work on violence against women prevention initiatives.
- Create small awareness raising products that can be used in conjunction with existing council services. For example, Mackay Regional Council had ‘throw out domestic and family violence’ stickers made to go on residential and commercial garbage bins, and Hawkesbury Council are supporting a NSW-wide initiative called the ‘Dunny Door campaign’ to supply the public with contact information for the NSW Rape Crisis service on a sticker on the back of public toilet doors. For more examples of prevention of violence against women collateral visit the campaign pages of the Doing Nothing Does Harm website.
Align with a wider national or international campaign
When starting out, it is also a good idea to align awareness-raising activities with established state, national or international campaigns, such as the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (the United Nation’s campaign which runs from 25 November to 10 December), or International Women’s Day on 8 March. These popular campaigns have wide recognition and there is an opportunity for local governments across Australia to adapt key messages and resources developed by larger agencies. You may be able to utilise campaign toolkits and materials developed for these campaigns, and help to reinforce the messaging at your local level. For more information on coordination of Victoria’s 16 Days of Activism campaign, please visit the MAV website.
Resources and tools to support your work
Next stepRun a training session for your staff
Supported by the Australian Government Department of Social Services.