Concurrent Session - Day 2 - Pleiades Room

Responses for children and young people experiencing FDV from CaLD, Disability, LGBTQIA+ minority groups

Elizabeth Lang

Elizabeth Lang is the Founder and CEO of Diversity Focus, a Perth based cultural diversity research and training consultancy. Her areas of expertise include intersectional diversity and inclusion, domestic and family violence and human rights. She is a passionate speaker and has presented on a number of national and international platforms, including the UNHCR in Geneva Switzerland.
She has a passion for gender equity, specifically in prevention and early intervention for domestic and family violence. In line with this, she is completing her PhD research at Curtin University in the area of domestic and family violence.
Elizabeth has also worked as Sessional Academic at Curtin University since 2015 and continues to teach as a guest lecturer on a range of multidisciplinary undergraduate and postgraduate units. She has published in the area of domestic and family violence and international advocacy and is the author of the book ‘Wired for Bias’ which explores the formation and impact of bias at interpersonal and societal levels. Elizabeth is originally from South Sudan and has lived in Australia since arriving in 1998.

Culturally Responsive Domestic and Family Violence

Domestic and family violence is a universal human rights issue that transcends race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, sexuality, gender and ability among many more intersections of identity. While it’s reality is universal, its forms and the way it is understood and experienced across a diversity of cultural contexts can differ. At the core of this is an understanding of the concept of family, of power and the dynamics of power and authority that are culturally defined and influenced.

For practitioners, it is crucial that domestic and family violence is understood in its cultural contexts in order to effectively address it. Practice responses to domestic and family violence must be informed by an intersectional prism that is culturally responsive to the needs of each client. Practitioners working in a range of roles must be guided willing to explore alternative paradigms and develop an understanding that encompasses the broader challenges experienced by children, young people, adults and families from collectivist cultural backgrounds. An appreciation of conceptual frameworks that underpin and are relevant to the needs of collectivist cultures is central to working within a new paradigm.

Dr Marilyn Metta

Dr Marilyn Metta (she/they) is an Asian-Australian, cis-gendered feminist scholar and storyteller with an interdisciplinary research and practice background in feminist storytelling, social sciences, gender studies, cultural studies, counselling, social justice and human rights. She’s the Senior Lecturer in Anthropology and Sociology and works with the Centre for Human Rights at Curtin University. Marilyn is an internationally renowned feminist scholar and researcher in the feminist research and human rights and has published widely on intimate abuse and domestic and family violence and feminist research methodologies. Marilyn has over 20 years’ experience working as a trauma counsellor with culturally diverse and marginalised communities. Marilyn was the winner of the International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry 2011 Outstanding Qualitative Book Award for her book, Writing Against, Alongside and Beyond Memory: Lifewriting as Reflexive Poststructuralist Feminist Research Practice (2010). Her documentary film, How I Became A Refugee, has won several international film awards including the 2016 Award of Recognition at the Impact DOCS Award. She was the keynote speaker for the WA Museum’s campaign,16 Days in WA to Stop Violence Against Women in 2018.
Marilyn is the CEO and Founder of The Metis Centre, an educational and social justice organisation working to address gender inequality and promote women and children’s rights, safety and freedom. She is the Founder of Metamorphosis Inc, a not-for-profit charitable organisation working to provide safety and provide access to education for refugee and stateless children and young people.

Hidden Voices: Young people’s experiences of FDV

Hidden Voices is a new research project that aims to document the first-hand experiences of children and young people living with and/or exposed to intimate abuse and domestic and family violence (DFV) in culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities in WA. Research has shown the negative long-term impacts on children and young people living with and/or exposed to DFV. The 2016 Personal Safety Survey (PSS) found around half of women who experienced DFV had children in their care when the violence occurred and half of these reported that the children had seen and heard the violence. Children and young people from CaLD communities are particularly vulnerable to the exposure to DFV due to intersecting factors including collectivist familial orientations, cultural and language barriers, social isolation, increased risks of homelessness and poverty due to migration status, and racism. Research shows that CaLD communities experience higher rates of DFV and more barriers to reporting and accessing support services.

This paper will present some of the preliminary findings of the research project on the nature and prevalence of CaLD children and young people’s exposure to DFV and the impacts of the exposure. The paper will discuss some of the existing barriers facing CaLD young people and their families in accessing support services and how service providers, policy-makers, educators and health professionals can better respond to the specific needs of young people in culturally safe ways.

Olivia Colja

Olivia Colja (she/her) is a first-generation Australian with a mixed cultural heritage of Middle-Eastern and European descent and is the Youth Worker for Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services and has over 15 years of experience working with youth from complex backgrounds in the not-for-profit, private and local government sectors. Olivia has developed, implemented and promoted programs for but not limited to; at-risk young people experiencing homelessness, drug & alcohol issues, mental health and well-being, education, Culturally and Linguistically Diverse backgrounds, First Nations people, domestic violence and young women and children living in refuge accommodation, domestic and international students in the university sector, neurodiversity and autism. Olivia has a Diploma of Business (Human Resources), Bachelor of Social Science and a Bachelor of Contemporary Arts.

Olivia’s portfolio at Ishar focuses on supporting young women from culturally diverse and marginalised communities with lived experiences of family and domestic violence and/or sexual assault. She provides one-on-one support to young women under 25 with relationships, mental health and education and works closely with the specialist team at Ishar to provide holistic, client-centred support. Olivia works with the health promotions team at Ishar to deliver workshops in schools discussing; consent, sexual health and healthy relationships.

Outside of her formal role at Ishar, Olivia is the Founder and Director of the WOMXN project, supporting women and non-binary people to create artwork from an autobiographical narrative with a universal reach.
Olivia is strongly focused on cultivating supportive and safe environments for women to express themselves through a variety of platforms and has supported artists to create work discussing topics such as sexual assault, miscarriage and sexual health.

Olivia has been the recipient of the 2018 UWA Cultural Precinct Halo Awards, the 2020 ECU Arts and Humanities Executive Dean’s Travel Scholarship and the 2019 New Colombo Plan, Visual Arts, Design and Writing study tour to China scholarship. These were in recognition of her multidisciplinary approach to working across the community and the arts sector.

Empowering CaLD Young Women To Find Their Voices

Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services is a provider of vital services to refugee and migrant women, supporting them to become contributing members of the community.
In recent years there has been a significant increase in the numbers of women experiencing domestic violence seeking assistance from Ishar, growing from 12 in 2016 to over 186 in 2020, an average of 10 women per month, and steadily increasing in January 2021, 37 women accessed FDV services at Ishar.
Following an unprecedented increase in DV cases in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CaLD) communities, Ishar saw the need to have a prevention program that raises awareness of what constitutes family and domestic violence by delivering education workshops within CaLD communities. The education workshops are provided to the CaLD communities to women and young women in high schools. The prevention program aims to enable CaLD women and children to live free from violence in safe accommodation and increase self-esteem, confidence, resilience, and wellbeing.
This presentation will discuss the use of a unique model of primary prevention to raise awareness to young women from CaLD backgrounds about respectful relationships. The presenters will discuss how the workshops were delivered to approximately 120 CaLD young women from July to December 2020.
The presenters will share a case study of a young woman who attended one of the respectful relationship workshops. She later accessed Ishar services and disclosed to the doctor of being sexually abused by a community leader. The presenters will also share feedback from the young women who attended the workshops highlighting the needs of young people and their awareness to access culturally appropriate and informed support.
At the end of the presentation, the audience will be allowed to ask questions about the prevention program to empower CaLD young women to know and understand how a res

Bella Broadway

Bella Broadway (she/her/hers)
Managing Director – Connection And Wellbeing Australia (CAWA)

Bella is an educator in the areas of: Suicide Prevention, Diversity and Inclusivity, Family and Domestic Violence, Communication & Behaviour and Mental Health and Wellbeing.

Bella was awarded Business Woman of The Year – Belmont and Western Australian Small Business Awards and recognised in the 2019 OUTstanding 30 LGBTIQ+ Public Sector Executives List.

Connection and Wellbeing Australia is a proud finalist in the 2020 WA Mental Health Awards- Diversity Category.

Behind the Rainbow Gate ​

Seeking to build your capacity to see beyond the Rainbow Gate?

In an effort to build the capacity of services to understand, respond to and meet the needs of LGBTIQA+ people, we invite you to join us in this interactive and practical workshop.

Develop your understanding about LGBTIQA+ experiences of Family and Domestic Violence and Intimate Partner Violence (FDV/IPV) and discover tools to create cultural, organisational and personal changes to your practices that can reduce barriers to access and improve outcomes for LGBTIQA+ people seeking support for FDV/IPV

Workshop will cover:
-How FDV IPV specifically presents in LGBTIQA+ communities
-Specific contributors to LGBTIQ+ FDV/IPV
-How to work inclusively with LGBTIQ+ people experiencing FDV and IPV
-Referring pathways and working with LGBTIQA+ groups and services

You can ask that! The workshop will also be a safe space to ask open questions and share experiences of the systemic limitations that contribute to outcomes for LGBTIQA+ people.