The particular challenges faced by victims of domestic violence from multicultural communities was the focus of a special round table forum held at NSW Parliament House recently.

Trish Doyle, Shadow Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence called the round-table which gathered representatives from more than 20 front line services to discuss how government can better support migrant women and children facing domestic violence.

“This is an area that needs careful attention for its particular challenges,” Ms Doyle said.

“On top of dealing with the trauma of domestic abuse, there are also sensitive cultural issues and stigmas which may prevent some women from coming forward to seek help.

“It’s important that police and first responders are trained to be aware of cultural issues in specific communities and that appropriate case management is available.”

Ms Doyle said the round-table will formulate recommendations and actions that she will take to the government.

“Our job is to listen to those working at the coal face who know what their communities need.”

Former Labor leader, Jodi Mckay, also attended the roundtable to meet the participants and acknowledge their important work supporting domestic violence victims from cultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

“Domestic and family systems need to change to include all women, regardless of culture and race,” she said.

The key issues discussed at the roundtable include increased support for women on temporary visas, culturally appropriate case management services, reporting abusive relationships and barriers in providing information to migrant and refugee women.

Dr Sabrin Farooqui, President of Cultural Diversity Network Inc (CDNI) and the co-host of the event, says that she is very thankful to the Shadow Minster of Women NSW and the leadership team of NSW Labor for their advocacy on the issue of domestic violence and for being so receptive to the representatives of organisations that work with domestic violence of women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

The event provided a good opportunity to the DV service providers in NSW to sit down together, to learn more about each other’s work and to explore how we can support each other.

A report will be formulated and presented to the government summarising the recommendations and action points arising from the roundtable.