What is domestic and family violence?

According to the Government of South Australia, “domestic violence includes any attempt by one person in an intimate or family relationship to dominate and control the other. The abusive person will use fear, guilt, shame, intimidation and/or violence to control and dominate the other, causing fear, physical harm and/or psychological harm.”

It’s shocking to know that in Australia 1 in 6 women and 1 in 16 men have experienced physical or sexual violence from a current or former partner. [1]

Domestic and family violence and abuse can present itself in many forms including:

  • Psychological and verbal abuse
  • Financial abuse
  • Technological abuse
  • Spiritual or cultural abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Physical abuse

Regardless of the form, domestic violence is never ok, and support is always available.

[1] https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports-data/behaviours-risk-factors/domestic-violence/overview

Support at UniSA

Counselling Services

Because domestic and family violence can be an overwhelming and traumatic experience, it is often useful to have someone to talk to about your feelings, fears and concerns. 

For students

Counselling for students is free of charge and available from Monday to Friday, 9am - 5pm.  You can book an appointment online or by phone:  

  • Metropolitan campuses: 1300 301 703
  • Mt Gambier Campus: (08) 8723 1999
  • Whyalla Campus: (08) 8645 8233

For staff

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is free of charge and available to all UniSA employees and their immediate family.  Appointments are available from Monday to Friday, 9am - 5.00pm and can be booked by calling:  

  • Metropolitan campuses: 1300 277 924
  • Mt Gambier Campus: (08) 8723 1999
  • Whyalla Campus: (08) 8645 8233

Campus Security

  • 24 hours/free call: 1800 500 911 or 88888 from internal University telephones. UniSA’s Campus Security is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 
  • UniSA Out-of-Hours Crisis Line: Call 1300 107 441 or text 0488 826 346 (Out-of-Hours runs between 5pm and 9am on weekdays and 24 hours on weekends and public holidays).

Health Services

If you have or are experiencing domestic and family violence, you may have health concerns that you would like to discuss with a doctor.  You can also ask the doctor for a certificate if you think you will need to take some time off work or university. 

The UniSA Medical Clinic has been established to provide acute and preventative health care and is available via 1300 172 996 or the Clinic webpage.

Support outside of UniSA

Perpetrators:

  • No to Violence’s Men's Referral Service provides support to men who wish to manage anger and violence. Phone and online chat services are available via the Men’s Referral Service website and 1300 766 491.
  • MensLine Australia offers support around managing conflict and anger, relationship issues and violence in the home - phone 1300 78 99 78 for support.
  • 1800RESPECT is Australia's nationwide confidential information, counselling and support service for people impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence and abuse. It offers online and phone counselling and support, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Counselling is also available for those who want to change their violent behaviours through Uniting Communities. Visit the Uniting Communities webpage for more information.

For survivors of domestic violence:

  • 1800RESPECT is Australia's nationwide confidential information, counselling and support service for people impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence and abuse. It offers online and phone counselling and support, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Women’s Safety Services SA (WSSSA) support women and their children who are living with or escaping domestic and family violence. WSSSA provides a range of programs and assistance and can be contacted on 1800 800 098. More information and resources available on the WSSSA website.  
  • Relationships Australia SA offers a range of programs including counselling. More information is available on the Relationships Australia SA website.
  • Women’s Health Service provides medical and counselling services for women experiencing domestic and family violence related health issues. Visit the Women’s Health Services website for more details.
  • Legal Services Commission of SA offers free legal services to survivors of domestic and family violence. More information about accessing this service is available via the Commission’s website.
  • Your Toolkit offers advice and support for those who experience financial abuse. For more information and to access the toolkit, visit the Your Toolkit website.
  • The Office for the eSafety Commissioner offers a range of online safety advice for women. This advice is available via the esafety website.

Support is also available for bystanders. For suggestions about how to intervene in situations of domestic or sexual violence you can visit the Rise Above The Pack and Doing Nothing does Harm webpages.

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