Men also domestic violence victims, but little help offered | Sunshine Coast Daily
Friday, September 11, 2015
One in Three Campaign

"JAMES" wants people to know men suffer from domestic violence too.

The 61-year-old - who has to go by a pseudonym for legal reasons - feels the services available unfairly cater for women.

James (pictured) claims he has been the victim of domestic violence after he split from his former partner last December. He claims she had hit him with a wine bottle months earlier, but he forgave her as "I loved her".

Since then, he says he has "copped a beating and endured financial and mental torture". But his cries for help to authorities didn't receive the same amount of attention they would have - if he was a woman, he said.

Domestic Violence Connect CEO Diane Mangan acknowledged there were fewer services for men, but this was because the numbers of men needing help were so much lower.

DV Connect's Women's line is open 24/7 while the men's line was only open from 9am to midnight.

RELATED: '24/7 domestic violence helpline for men too costly'

Ms Mangan said the women's line received about 60,000 calls a year while "the men's line is 10% of that".

James said the system in place for men was "very limited", while the system for women was "astronomical".

Male support group One in Three argues one in every third case of domestic violence involves men, yet the government funding is unfairly skewed to women.

Researcher Greg Andresen said a bare minimum of "basic services" needed to be available to everyone, regardless of gender.

James said while the attacks on women were far greater, "I am still human and I have similar human rights. It's not a nice place to be (when you're being abused by your partner)".

He said he was kicked out of his former partner's home and had been unable to find shelter elsewhere. James has been seeing a psychologist - paid for by Centrelink - but felt like he was little more than a "CRN number".

"There is no housing for me. If I was a woman, something would be available."

VIOLENCE IN SPOTLIGHT

Source: One in Three campaign

Men looking for help can contact the DV Connect Mensline on 1800 600 636 between 9am and midnight seven days a week.

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Article originally appeared on One in Three Campaign (http://www.oneinthree.com.au/).
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