Local police on front line of domestic violence

As the Queensland Police Domestic and Family Violence Coordinator for the Bayside Patrol Group, Sergeant Sharlene McMahon sees all too frequently the impacts of domestic violence.

“As Police we often see the worst side of people’s behaviour and the negative impact domestic violence can have on individuals, families and children who experience domestic violence, which not only includes physical violence, but can include threats, harassment and intimidation,” she said.

“We see the physical injuries on people which can be quite severe and life threatening at times. We see the break down in families and the impact violence within the home can have on children.

“Police Officers in the Redlands and Bayside areas are called to incidences of domestic and family violence on a daily basis, which can be reported by the parties involved or by community members or neighbours who hear or witness the violence.”

In the lead up to Redland City Council’s Diner En Rouge later this month to raise awareness of domestic violence, Sergeant McMahon has supported the push for increased awareness of the issue in the local community.

“The Queensland Police Service recognises that domestic violence is a serious and complex social problem within our community and the Redlands and bayside, despite its idyllic location and surroundings, is not immune to this problem,” she said.

“The initial aim of police is to ensure the safety of all persons involved, including themselves, as situations can often be quite dangerous and volatile.

“Part of our role is also to ensure that the people who commit domestic violence are held accountable for their actions and a clear message is sent that the community does not accept or tolerate violence towards another person.

“The Redland City Council’s upcoming Diner En Rouge is a great opportunity for everyone in the community to get involved and help raise funds and awareness of domestic violence, so that we can work together to prevent or reduce domestic violence within our community.”

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the special dining experience would be an opportunity to put domestic violence on the local agenda.

“This is a difficult topic, but it exists in the Redlands as it does in all communities, so it is important that as a community we start talking about it and look for ways to deal with it,” she said.

“To assist Council has combined with the Redlands Domestic and Family Violence Action Group and Zonta clubs to host Diner En Rouge on 29 November.

“This will be an evening of fine local food held at a secret location to help raise awareness of domestic and family violence in the Redlands.

“Domestic violence has the potential to touch everyone in the community, so everyone is encouraged to get behind this cause by attending this event.”