Archive for Within Victoria

Moment of Silence and Vigil – Post Pride March 2017, Cantani Gardens 

// January 29th, 2017 // No Comments » // Within Victoria

Post Pride March festivities at Catani Gardens today will see the introduction of a moment of silence and vigil performance, a new Pride March tradition that pays homage to all queer peoples who have suffered violence because of their gender or sexuality. For 2017, this will be performed by Deborah Cheetham AO, celebrated Yorta Yorta soprano, actor, composer and playwright. 

The Anti-Violence Project congratulates Midsumma on their initiative and asks all at Pride March to report homophobic and trans/bi-phobic harassment and prejudice motivated violence each and every time it occurs. Call police 000 and when safe contact the AVP http://antiviolence.info/report-violence 

Seeking support

// January 23rd, 2017 // No Comments » // Within Australia, Within Victoria

If you or anyone you know needs help:

Qlife 3pm-midnight 1800 184 527

Lifeline on 13 11 14

Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800

MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978

Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467

Beyond Blue on 1300 22 46 36

Headspace on 1800 650 89

If you’re in danger, call police 000.

Find the location, name & contact number of your local GLLO (Police LGBTI liaison officer via our VicAVP site http://antiviolence.info/violence-map/

When safe, make a violence report to the AVP http://antiviolence.info/report-violence/

Leadership, personal experience and protecting Safe Schools – Harriet Shing MLC

// November 28th, 2016 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Grace

We share with you a wonderful speech by Harriet Shing MLC in the Legislative Council at the Parliament of Victoria (October 26, 2016) in support of the Safe Schools program as the first out LGBT member of state parliament responding to a motion to remove the Safe Schools program from schools.

Harriet says “(there have been) other women who have been in this Parliament and other women who are in public office who, like people throughout society, have gone their entire lives hiding themselves from the world, hiding themselves from the reflections that they see in the mirror, living lives which may seem to put a somewhat tolerable skin on it on one level but which do not truly reflect who they are on another.

She uses her personal experience to unpack what she sees and that which we agree is enormously challenging for parents to do when their children come out as same sex attracted or gender diverse, that is to look their child in the eye, hear them out and say to them that they love them anyway — that they love them unconditionally.

“That is not always the case”, Ms Shing told Parliament, “It is also not always the case that children are accepting of the other, that children can understand the importance of being accepting and respectful, that children understand the importance of the fact that sex, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity and religion — personal characteristics, the essence of who somebody is — are not and should not ever be considered to be causes of derision or contempt or isolation or exclusion or bullying”.

She then unpacks the issues surrounding discrimination of LGBTI children, looks at the guidance and support the Safe Schools program provides these children and those around them and then discusses her own personal experience of being accepted for who she is by a vast majority of people she deals with in her role as an MP yet “having said that, there are a number who do not (accept my sexuality)”.

Ms Shing says “that number is small, but it is very, very vocal, and that number is prone to being vicious on occasion. That number is prone to telling me that I am an abomination, that I am a disgrace and that I should be ashamed, and so in standing here today I refuse to be an abomination, I refuse to be a disgrace and I refuse to be ashamed. But in doing that I note that it has got to be happening to kids in secondary school because if it is happening to me as an elected member of Parliament, if it happens to me in my workplace and it happens to me out in the broader community, then it has got to be happening in our playgrounds and it has got to be happening at our bus stops, and I know it is happening in our workplaces”.

The Anti-Violence Project takes the view that Safe Schools is much needed program addressing homophobic harassment and bullying in schools however a social policy vacuum exists outside the school gate where prejudice and homophobia (including trans/bi-phobia) are passed from generation to generation through families. Schools must be safe places for students; homes, streets and society must be safe places for all same sex attracted and gender diverse people. As a =n out member of parliament and an Anbassador for the Safe Schools Program, Harriet Shing shines a light on the work needed to shift our society on both sides of the school gate.

Read the complete Harriet Shing speech in support of the Safe Schools program here:
http://hansard.parliament.vic.gov.au/isysquery/c2cfa5c3-e733-4088-8360-adac11d64e34/2/doc/
or via her personal website here:
http://www.harrietshing.com.au/news/you-are-okay-exactly-as-you-are-harriet-speaks-out-in-parliament-about-bullying-having-respect-for-all-people-and-safe-schools/3/

Premier Daniel Andrews full apology for old laws criminalising homosexual behaviour

// May 24th, 2016 // No Comments » // AVP news, Elders past and present, Media discussion, Within Australia, Within Victoria

“For a future that is strong and fair and just!” – Hon Daniel Andrews, Premier of Victoria, May 24, 2016.

“Challenging some of the fundamental imbalances that today still stop gay men from reporting violence & harassment!” – Greg Adkins JP, executive director, Anti-Violence Project of Victoria Inc.

“(The) Apology is a powerful symbolic act to repair the harm caused by unjust laws & affirm the value of sexual difference” – Anna Brown, director Advocacy & Strategic Litigation, Human Rights Law Centre

Homophobes & bigots limber-up for the AFL’s Pride Round – are they a dying breed or on the rise in society?

// April 30th, 2016 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Research, Sport, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Grace

While homophobes and bigots attempt to make Aussie Rules Football the latest battleground in their fight against marriage equality, targeting St Kilda and Sydney AFL Football Clubs in a campaign to derail the AFL’s first Pride match in June, the unanswered question is “Are they a dying breed or increasing in numbers?”

Public support for marriage equality has dramatically risen. But just how rampant is homophobia in the sports-attending population; have hearts and minds changed? If so, by how much; if not, why not?

Research from 2005 revealed Melbourne’s Inner City to be least homophobic (14 per cent) and the Outer South & East suburbs the most. Outside Victoria, the study identified the three most and three least homophobic areas of Australia. Overall the most homophobic areas were the Moreton area of country Queensland (excluding the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast), Central/South-West Queensland and the Burnie/Western district of Tasmania where 50 per cent believed homosexuality is immoral.

Following Melbourne’s Inner City as least homophobic Australian metropolitan areas were Central Perth (21 per cent) and Central Melbourne (26 per cent).

The Anti-Violence Project is encouraging the AFL, LGBTI community organisations and the state government to use the pending AFL Pride match in June to see how much has changed in the hearts and minds of people leaving their suburban lounge-rooms to attend AFL football matches around the nation since the 2005 research.

Read more about homophobic flyers, targeting marriage equality and the AFL’s Pride match, left on spectators’ cars outside the VFL game between Sandringham and Footscray last weekend. The flyers were headlined: “Children deserve a mother and father”, here: http://www.theage.com.au/afl/afl-season-2016-st-kilda-sydney-targeted-in-protest-against-afls-first-gay-pride-game-20160429-goi52g.html

AVP and other LGBTI groups hope to find a home in the Pride Centre

// April 21st, 2016 // No Comments » // AVP news, Media discussion, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Grace

Journalist Beau Donelly (The Age, April 21, 2016) writes that the Anti-Violence Project are hopeful they will find a home in Melbourne’s new Pride Centre, announced by the Andrews government on Wednesday. Tipped to be one of the world’s leading hubs for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community, the $15 million centre is expected to be larger than its counterpart in San Francisco.

For the past 20 years, the group on the front line of supporting victims of homophobic attacks and same-sex domestic violence has been run from its board members’ garages and living rooms.

The Anti-Violence Project of Victoria does not have an office, so when its leadership team comes together once a month to discuss the charity’s future they meet in a Thai cafe in Fitzroy (photo of the AVP’s executive director, Greg Adkins by Simon O’Dwyer).

Read more here:
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/lgbti-groups-vying-for-space-in-the-multimilliondollar-pride-centre-20160421-goc0jv.html

LGBTI Pride Centre is also a coup for Regional Victoria

// April 21st, 2016 // No Comments » // AVP news, Relationships, Within Victoria

A GAY Pride Centre to be built in Melbourne will be a coup for regional LGBTI people, according to a AVP’s Ballarat director consulted for the project.
Luke Gahan told the Ballarat Courier that he and another regional spokesperson from Shepparton were part of a wide consultation process for the centre.

Read more here:
http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/3862958/pride-centre-a-huge-win-for-ballarat/?cs=62

Research into relationship experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people

// April 11th, 2016 // No Comments » // Research, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Researchers at Flinders University, the University of Central Queensland, and the University of Sunderland are currently undertaking a project focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people’s experiences of close relationships, both with other humans and with animal companions.

Dr Damien Riggs, Dr Nik Taylor, and Dr Heather Fraser at Flinders University, Dr Catherine Donovan at the University of Sunderland, and Dr Tania Signal at the Central Queensland University aim to better understand your experiences of close relationships, both with other humans and with animal companions. Evidence from research with heterosexual cisgender people suggests that animals can be important sources of support, both for people who are not in relationships, and for people who are in relationships that are abusive. However there is no research on what animals mean for lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) people in the context of their relationships and lives.

The AVP urges you to please take the time to complete this survey – follow this link:-
https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LGBTAVDV

One in three in LGBTI community experiences street harassment – La Trobe University research reveals

// April 6th, 2016 // No Comments » // Research, Within Victoria

Grace

The Age newspaper today focuses on La Trobe University research that shines a light on the troubling behaviour many LGBTI people have to endure, often in plain sight, with about one in three having experienced street harassment.

La Trobe Researcher Bianca Fileborn (pictured above) surveyed 292 people throughout Australia, 54 per cent of whom identified as being sexually diverse, on their experiences.

Dr Fileborn said there was little difference between the types of harassment women and LGBTI people experienced. These include staring (65.1 per cent), comments (63 per cent), car horn honking (63.3 per cent), wolf-whistling (41.1 per cent) and unwanted conversation (42.5 per cent).

The Anti-Violence Project has long championed the cause of people experiencing street harassment and prejudice motivated violence, where an estimated 7 out of 10 people in metropolitan areas and 9 out of 10 in outer urban and regional/rural cities and towns are not reporting their experiences of violence and harassment to anyone.

AVP executive director Greg Adkins said “The saddest thing is that many LGBTI people think this (street harassment) is something they have to learn to accept; that it’s something that’s going to happen to them anyway. That’s just really sad and misplaced. No one should face harassment because of their gender or sexuality.”

People experiencing street harassment, prejudice motivated violence or relationship violence can report their experiences via the AVP website.

Read more here:
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/street-harassment-of-lgbti-people-rife-la-trobe-university-study-finds-20160406-gnzq0z.html

Third-party and assisted violence reporting links to VicPol needed

// March 15th, 2016 // No Comments » // AVP news, Media discussion, Relationship violence, Trans and Gender Diverse, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Grace

Violence impacts the LGBTi community yet remains vastly under-reported. According to the state’s LGBTi Anti-Violence Project this hides the true nature and extent of harassment and violence in Victoria and nationwide.

The AVP has asked Victoria Police to partner with them and other LGBTi community organisations to help reduce harm for LGBTi individuals while also enhancing the range of ways violence can be reported, how reports are accepted by Victoria Police and becoming integrated into their data systems and how those impacted by violence can be triaged more effectively from experiencing violence towards the supports necessary to provide support to them.

This need has been long discussed and the research available for many years but what is missing is a mechanism to pull the threads together”, says AVP executive director Greg Adkins.

“Whatever the source of violence, street harassment, relationship violence or lateral violence between individuals, if the necessary work can be undertaken to bring police, unfunded community-led organisations and other non-government organisations who are funded to provide services to victims of violence, more closely together then the whole society stands to gain.

“Service gaps will be readily identified, gaps in current police resources to fully address the actual extent of violence can then be identified and planned for, and funding gaps for unfunded community-led organisations working in this space can be plugged.

“Community, police, government working together in a new whole-of-life approach to violence impacting LGBTI people.

“In 2016 only a small percentage of LGBTi individuals report their experiences of violence to anyone, the needs of the majority of victims is unknown and healthy outcomes for individuals are delayed well beyond what the broad society would expect is acceptable. This means the long-term cost for society blows out of proportion to the policy solution that should be put in place today.