Rosie Batty – stepping back but still fighting

Former Australian of the Year Rosie Batty has reflected on her work with the Luke Batty Foundation in a speech at Parliament House in Perth today.

She said her experience with family violence pushed her to stand up for victims.

“It is a huge challenge and problem and it is incredibly important that we don’t let this problem fall off the radar,” she said.

“We should be discussing the perpetrator of the violence and making them accountable.”

Batty has been an advocate against domestic violence for the past five years and said more can be done to reduce sobering statistics.

“We still have one woman a week being murdered,” she said.

The  Foundation was established after Batty’s 11-year-old son, Luke, was murdered by his own father in 2014 following years of abuse.

“We should remove the word family, we should remove the word domestic, we should call it for what it is, violence,” she said.

Batty announced she was resigning from her role in the foundation in mid-February.

She thanked her supporters, including mining giant Rio Tinto, for their efforts to increase help for workers affected by family and domestic violence.

“We cannot wait for people to fix these problems,” she said.

“We need to be part of the solution.”

Betty referred to substance abuse and mental health issues as significant impacts of violence and expressed her wish for work to continue to be done to support those who still struggle with family violence.