NETWORK + UNITY
FORMING THE PEAK
Queensland has a number of ‘Networks of Services’ working in the field of sexual violence, women’s health, women's refuges and domestic & family violence. Until now, however, there hasn’t been one defined network which united us all.
Discussions had been held within the sector over a number of years, with talk generally acknowledging the need for a peak body. Recent resurfacing around the need for a Peak resulted in a number of discussions within the sector about our commitment to overall unity. Out of these discussions, an agreement was made to bring together a united body of women’s services in Queensland (launched in June 2014).
The peak body is needed to inform government and the community of the extent of violence experienced by women and children, the enormity of the problem, and the impact that violence has on women’s lives. The peak will explain to community and government the gendered nature of violence. It is also important to provide an analysis of violence – why men continue to perpetrate violence against women; and to take issues with explanations for men’s violence which blame women and excuse abusers. It is important to work together in the women’s sector to take responsibility for the wellbeing of many, to work together for the common good, and to ask government to do the same.
"Women-only services benefit individual women and broader society… the primary reason women’s organisations are successful (in changing women’s lives, wider communities, and society as a whole) is because their approaches are women-centred and based on values of empowerment, rights and self-determination… (WRC, 2006)