4 women and 3 children killed in less than a fortnight. These families deserved urgency.

Warning: This story contains the image and name of an Indigenous person who has died.

We woke, this morning, in the midst of an unfolding situation. 

Three children were missing in Queensland. Police were concerned because a three-year-old girl, five-year-old boy and six-year-old boy were 'taken by a man known to them' on the Gold Coast.

They issued an amber alert to the public with fears they could be at 'significant risk,' asking the media to circulate their smiling photos widely. 

Thankfully, their story had a happy ending. The three kids were found safe and well at 7am, and a 27-year-old man was taken into custody. 

We can only speculate the details of that story, but we know they're not good. We know that three young kids potentially spent the night alone in a vehicle, parked at a petrol station. 

We can only hope this event means that family is now getting the urgent help they need. 


It's just the latest in a week of horrible headlines concerning women and children in Australia. 

Leading the TV news bulletins last night; an alleged domestic violence triple murder in Sydney on Sunday morning. 

Police believe a father set fire to his Lalor Park home, dragging his own children back into the flames.

The blaze claimed the lives of a 10-month-old baby girl and two boys aged three and six.

Four other children aged between four and 11, and their mother, were taken to hospital. One of the children allegedly tried to save their siblings. A heroic neighbour tried too.

The story is so horrifying its received widespread coverage, with the NSW Premier calling it "horrifying and senseless". 

Police at the site a fatal house fire at Lalor Park in Sydney's west. Image: AAP/Thomas Parrish.


But they're not the only senseless alleged murders that have occurred over the past ten days. 

Last Wednesday a woman's body was found in a wheelie bin at a tip in Melbourne. She is yet to be identified but 9News is reporting her to be a middle-aged woman who only moved into an address in Coolaroo eight weeks ago. 

In the early hours of last Saturday morning, Sarah Miles lay dying at a home on the north coast of NSW with injuries to her head. 

She was still alive when emergency services arrived 55 minutes later, but died shortly afterwards. Her partner has been charged with her murder and her son is horrified she waited so long for help. 

Sarah Miles. Image: Supplied.


Last Friday a mum-of-five and local Indigenous leader in Queensland, Carolyn McCarthy, was allegedly murdered by her partner. 

After being stabbed, the 51-year-old stumbled to a neighbour's home for help, but she couldn't be saved. 

She was supposed to be celebrating NAIDOC Week, instead her community is in mourning. 

On Thursday Annette Kiss was found dead in a home in Sydney's inner west. 

The mother-of-two and business owner had only moved in a few weeks earlier and was allegedly murdered by a male housemate. Police who attended described it as one of the worst scenes they'd witnessed in years.  


Carolyn McCarthy (left) and Annette Kiss (right.) Image: Facebook.

That's seven deaths in less than two weeks; four women and three children killed in three different states. 

Domestic violence deaths have thankfully been a focus this year — in the media, and society alike. Our politicians have been pushed and prodded on the topic and in May after widespread 'No More' marches, they announced an emergency package after another string of violent deaths.


But the reactionary $924 million dollar promise lacked urgency. The funds will go towards helping women flee violent relationships; something that won't start until July 2025. 

Some states and territories announced initiatives too. For example, NSW pledged $230 million in May to things like specialist staff, a prevention scheme, yet-to-be-announced changes to state bail laws and enhanced security systems for victim's homes. 

These announcements shouldn't be sniffed at. But to put things into perspective, Greens MP Abigail Boyd said NSW was still likely to be funding responses to domestic and family violence at between half and two-thirds of which is being provided by Victoria — even with this latest commitments. 

As for the federal government, the money allocated to women's safety in the recent federal budget is a fifth of what we're spending on counter-terrorism. 

As the ABC pointed out a few months ago, "in the last 30 years, more than 1,500 women have been killed by their intimate partners in Australia. Nine have been killed by terrorists." 

"The sad reality is that we are starting from a position so retrograde, so inadequate, that we've become trained to be grateful for crumbs," said Boyd. 

The bottom line is these announcements aren't helping the women of today and tomorrow. They didn't help the seven lives we lost last week.

According to the RED HEART Campaign, nine children and 47 women have allegedly been murdered in 2024.

We're only halfway through the year, does that mean we can expect to double that by December? 


Will any of these government promises make a difference before then?

These are the grim questions we're left with as headline after headline brings more news of men's violence against women. Because let's be clear — it's mainly men. Women aren't killing others at such an extraordinary, horrifying rate. It's men's attitudes and behaviour that needs to change. 

Women are being dumped in wheelie bins. 

They're being stabbed in their homes. 

Their children are being burnt in front of them. 

This is not the kind of Australia we should accept. These women and children deserve urgency — they deserve more than five-year plans. 

Let's hope the wall-to-wall media spotlight those three children in Queensland attracted overnight, is loud enough to keep them, at least, safe. 

If this has raised any issues for you, or if you just feel like you need to speak to someone, please call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) – the national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service.

Mamamia is a charity partner of RizeUp Australia, a national organisation that helps women, children and families move on after the devastation of domestic and family violence. Their mission is to deliver life-changing and practical support to these families when they need it most. If you would like to support their mission you can donate here.

Feature image: Facebook.