Respect Victoria Opens Its Doors

Doors have opened on Victoria’s first ever dedicated family violence prevention agency, as part of the Andrews Labor Government’s efforts to create a Victoria free from family violence.

Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Natalie Hutchins today officially opened Respect Victoria and announced the organisation’s Chief Executive Officer and Chair.

Respect Victoria’s inaugural board chair will be Melanie Eagle, who is currently the CEO of Hepatitis Victoria and a former Mayor of the City of St Kilda.

Tracey Gaudry will be Respect Victoria’s inaugural CEO and comes to the position with 25 years of community, sporting and organisational experience. A former Olympian, Ms Gaudry was CEO of Hawthorn Football Club, the first woman to serve in the role, and CEO of the Amy Gillett Foundation.

Respect Victoria will work to address gender inequality as a root cause of family violence. A statutory authority to be enshrined in legislation, it will work to change the attitudes, social norms and culture that lead to family violence and violence against women.

In addition to $100m for prevention programs over the last 4 years the Labor Government has already provided $12 million for Respect Victoria and it will continue to receive dedicated and sustained funding.

The agency fulfils Recommendation 188 of the Royal Commission into Family Violence, and forms part of the first pillar of the Labor Government’s primary prevention strategy, Free from violence. The organisation will lead on two pillars of the strategy: research and evaluation, and community engagement.

Respect Victoria will also provide expert advice on best practice, and hold quality assurance and accreditation functions. It will engage in whole-of-community campaigns and activities to change the culture that allows family violence to happen in the first place.

This is part of the Labor Government’s unprecedented $2.6 billion investment to prevent family violence – more than the Federal Government or any other state or territory in the nation.

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Quotes attributable to Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Natalie Hutchins

“Respect Victoria will help Victoria a achieve a future free from family violence, where all Victorians are equal, empowered and respected.”

“We need to understand how to change behaviour, what interventions work, and add to the more than 1 in 4 Victorians who have already heard our message to eliminate family violence– Respect Victoria will do that.” 

Quotes attributable to Respect Victoria Chairperson Melanie Eagle

“Changing the attitudes and behaviours that drive family violence is the challenge and opportunity of a lifetime. My vision for Respect Victoria is to create generational behaviour change for a future free from violence.”