Older women and intimate partner violence

Seniors Rights Victoria has been contracted by Our Watch to consult with a wide array of organisations on the issue of older women who experience intimate partner violence.

Our Watch is a national organisation that has been established to drive nation-wide community change to prevent violence against women and their children. This project, which has been funded by the Victorian Government, seeks to build knowledge around how gender inequality and ageism intersect to impact older women who experience intimate partner violence.

Many activities in the family violence sector are aimed at preventing violence against women and children as acknowledged groups of high need. It has also become increasingly apparent, however, that older women may need more focused or specialised support and prevention activities that properly consider their situation. This includes a consideration of how older women might be affected by age-related illnesses, restricted income if no longer working, and different generational understandings of family violence.

SRV will consult with key stakeholders and practitioners in the family violence, ageing, health and legal sectors to better understand the nuances of older women who experience intimate partner violence, whether in a long-term or recent relationship. The consultation will consider issues such as stereotypes related to ageing and/or to marriage and relationships, as well as seeking to better understand the experiences of older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, women from a migrant background and women from the LGBTI communities.

The knowledge gained through the consultation process will be used by Our Watch to develop a workforce capability tool and to assist in the creation of effective primary prevention activities.