With Christmas around the corner, and a global pandemic still looming, police are urging families not to let the pressure of 2020 result in violence during the festive season.
While family violence takes place in Tasmanian homes daily, police have warned potential perpetrators they will be on high alert throughout the holidays, and ready to respond to reports of abuse.
Inspector Gavin Hallett of the Safe Families Coordination Unit said with people being separated, increased financial stress and holidays being cancelled, Christmas may not be full of joy for every family.
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"This year has been a stressful year for many families due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and we recognise that the busy Christmas and New Year period can sometimes place extra pressure on family life. However, this does not excuse people committing family violence," he said.
"We encourage anyone who witnesses, or is involved in, family violence to speak out, come forward and report the matter. Together we must show that we won't tolerate family violence."
One of the country's national anti-violence organisations is also setting a challenge for Tasmanian families this Christmas, and that challenge is to avoid gender stereotypes.
White Ribbon Australia has launched its #GiveAThought campaign, which questions "traditional gender roles" during the festive season.
Executive Director Brad Chilcott said White Ribbon was encouraging men to pause and think about what they can do to break down the stereotypes.
"We know that gender inequality and entrenched gender stereotypes are drivers of domestic violence," he said.
"Christmas traditions will always be with us, but that doesn't mean we should have assumptions that either consciously, or sub-consciously perpetuate unhealthy stereotypes.
"Who makes the decisions about who prepares the salads and the trifle, or who pokes the snags around the barbie? Who does the work and who is too busy drinking? And is it a choice, or an expectation dressed-up as tradition? We need to work together to undermine our assumptions and make sure that future generations are growing up experiencing what a healthy, equal relationship looks like."
The Examiner launched its own family violence campaign Fighting Back last month, which saw court fees removed for family violence orders.
The campaign will now focus on the state's family violence laws, how they support victims and what needs to change.
Read more here:
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- Support dries up: escaping family violence in Tasmania during COVID
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- Mary Knowles feared for her life before fleeing to Tasmania
- Family violence laws must look beyond the bruises
- There's a housing problem for women escaping family violence
- How Tasmania could offer more crisis housing to women
- Why we can't keep letting the risks of domestic violence go unnoticed