Couples Who Stayed Together
This chapter mirrors the analysis in Chapter 5, but applies it to couples who were separated when the interviews were conducted. Rather than prioritising the voices of the offenders (as was done in Chapter 5), this chapter begins with the stories of the victims. Their lives pre- and post-separation are described, including information about the length of the relationships, shared parenting and the impacts of substance abuse. The women’s views about attending (or not attending) court and how a mainstream court process compares to an Indigenous sentencing court process, for both them and the offender, are reported. This chapter explores the combined influences of separating from a partner and having been sentenced in the presence of Elders and Community Representatives, who offer a community-based policing and support function. This sheds light on what assistance and programs are needed for Indigenous partner violence offenders to change their behaviour.
KeywordsPartner violence victims Separated couples Elders and Community Representatives Alcohol and drug abuse Relationship dynamics Indigenous domestic and family violence Fighting Chaotic lifestyles Conflict Effects of colonisation On-off nature of relationships Victim attendance at court Offender accountability Victim aspirations of justice
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