People accused of domestic violence in Queensland will have to show why they should be released on bail under a shake-up of the state’s laws.
The Bail (Domestic Violence) and Another Act Amendment Bill was introduced by opposition leader Tim Nicholls and was passed by the Labor government with some changes on Wednesday night.
The laws reverse the onus of proof for those accused of domestic violence, meaning they must prove why they should be released on bail.
Victims will also be notified when their alleged attacker is being considered for parole, though a proposal to notify them of bail applications was opposed by the government.
The laws were prompted by the violent death of Gold Coast mother Teresa Bradford, who was murdered by her estranged husband David in January.
David Bradford was on bail for a previous attack on his wife and took his own life following the murder.
Mr Nicholls said the laws would make Queenslanders safer.
“On behalf of every woman, man and child feeling threatened by a violent former partner, I am relieved that MPs supported reforms to provide victims better protection,” he said in a statement.
The LNP’s bill was debated at the same time as the government’s changes to legislation relating to victims of crime.
Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said the laws would ensure people who were affected by tragedy would be better supported.
“Our government is committed to improving the safety of Queenslanders and this is why we took a bipartisan approach to this issue,” Mrs D’Ath said.
National domestic violence helpline: 1800 737 732 or 1800RESPECT. In an emergency call triple-zero.