We are facing a war on women and Indigenous women are on the front line. But does the Government even care?
Since the beginning of the year, following a similar confronting tally which was run by feminist organisations in the UK last year, two tallies have been running. The first one, tallied by Destroy the Joint, is entitled “Counting Dead Women 2015” and has been focussing on all women killed in violent attacks.
The second one, run by Real for Women, is entitled “Man Murders Woman 2015” and specifically focusses on the victims of men’s violence against women. Despite their different focusses, at this point in time the difference in the respective tallies is 1. 36 on DtJ and 33 on RfW. We are halfway through the 17th week of this year and based on the current trends, by the end of this week another woman is going to turn up dead and the tallies will tick over once more.
It is completely horrific in this country that we cannot go three and a half days without another woman being murdered. It is a national disgrace that this is not declared a state of emergency, a “war on women” and politicians aren’t doing everything they possibly can to change things. It is astounding that the Prime Minister, who is also the Minister for Women, has instead sought to defund women’s shelters, legal aid, and appears to not actually be remotely interested in women’s issues at all.
It is troubling to me that the media hardly covers this, that the public barely responds, and that where there is a murder/suicide, the numbers for suicide prevention lines are always listed, but not domestic violence support lines. Admittedly, it also concerns me that I can post an article up naming a woman as the 34th victim for the year and it barely gets a response. 36 women, no longer on this earth, and it’s not really considered a issue in huge chunks of society.
Yet as these lists have grown, I have been scanning them; searching for cases involving Aboriginal women. I know other Aboriginal women have been doing the same. And the results have been utterly horrific. As it stands, right now, I can confirm that three women on this list are Aboriginal women, and I believe that there may be a fourth though am yet to confirm this. Of the three women I can confirm, two were killed by men (one an ex-partner and one an unspecified acquaintance) and one was killed by a woman. The links to these three cases are here in reverse chronological order:
25/4 – Brewarrina
7/4 – Kalumburu
12/2 – Broome
In the case of the fourth woman whose case I am yet to confirm, her ex-partner was held in custody and was eventually charged with a breach of a DV order and drug offences. Investigation into her death continues.
29/3 – Alice Springs
Three, maybe four this year. It doesn’t sound like a huge number when stated in this way. Yet the reality is this: of the 36 women who have died as a result of violence this year alone, between 9% and 12% of them have been Aboriginal women.