Violence against people with disabilities: Using existing data to inform submissions to the Disability Royal Commission
Professor Anne Kavanagh
In light of the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation against People with Disability, there is an urgent need to have contemporary estimates of the prevalence of violence against people with disability for the public, policy makers and Commissioners. Our previous analysis of the 2015 ABS Personal Safety Survey showed that adults with disability are two to three times as likely to experience all forms of interpersonal violence (e.g. physical, emotional and sexual violence) than those without disabilities.
Now more than ever it is vital that statistics are based on the best available evidence, that limitations of current data are known and that there is a clearly identified way forward to improve the situation.
This research fills obvious gaps in the evidence-base by providing current statistics on violence against people with disability as well as identifying ways forward for providing better data and research. Co-researchers with disability work with our stakeholders to design dissemination strategies to maximise the impact of the research.
The project has three components:
- Provide an accessible, policy-relevant summary of the prevalence of violence of abuse among women with disability, using from the 2018 ABS Personal Safety Survey, the only Australian population-based survey of violence and abuse which also includes information on disability.
- Provide an accessible, policy-relevant summary of the prevalence of violence of abuse among men with disability, using data from Ten to Men study, the only Australian population-based study of Australian men, which also includes information on disability.
- Prepare a report on the existing administrative and survey data sources in Australia including a summary of how each could be used, the potential for data linkage and recommendations for future research/analysis.
- Development of an engagement and dissemination strategy which ensures the maximise impact of the research for the Commission and in the future
Professor Anne Kavanagh, University of Melbourne
Ms Lauren Krnjacki, University of Melbourne
Ms Anne-Marie Bollier, University of Melbourne
Ms Jen Hargrave, Women with Disabilities Victoria
Professor Gwynnyth Llewellyn, University of Sydney
Professor Eric Emerson, University of Sydney
Dr Sean Byars, University of Melbourne
Melbourne Disability Institute
Centre of Research Excellence in Disability and Health (CRE-DH)
As part of this project, we developed a series of fact sheets reporting on violence against people with disability in Australia. They can be downloaded as pdfs below:
- Byars S, Sutherland G, Kavanagh A, Llewellyn G, Krnjacki L, Bollier AM, Hargrave J et al.The Australian Disability and Violence Data Compendium. Melbourne: Centre of Research Excellence in Disability and Health. May 2020.
- Sutherland G, Byars S, Kavenagh M, Kavanagh A & Llewellyn G. Data needed to understand the scale of abuse faced by people with disability Pursuit, 26 June 2020.
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