It's White Ribbon Day: Speak out against domestic violence

TODAY is White Ribbon Day, a day which recognises the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Interrelate's North Coast manager, Julie Leete, is encouraging people to "break the silence around domestic violence".

"In Australia, on average, one woman is killed every week as a result of intimate partner violence," she said.

"These statistics are horrifying and clearly as a community we need to do more about this issue.

"We want to encourage people to stand up and speak out about this community issue.

"At Interrelate, we want people to know that help is available and that you can come to us without judgement.

"We have counsellors who are trained in providing support to people experiencing violence in their relationship and can assist victims and offenders."

Ms Leete said the consequences of family violence were far-reaching and not just limited to the victim.

"One in four Australian children are exposed to domestic violence, which is a recognised form of child abuse," she said.

"Research indicates that these children have an increased risk of mental health, behavioural and learning difficulties, in addition to an increased risk of going on to commit or experience violence in adulthood.

"By teaching children how to be safe in a relationship from a young age, we increase their ability to make healthy relationship choices later in life and to be assertive when their relationships are unsafe."

Interrelate is part of the Domestic Violence Committee in Lismore which has coordinated the Dirty Laundry Day installation at Lismore Shopping Square.

The installation conveys the message that family violence occurs in the home, behind the picket fence.

If you are experiencing violence or suspect someone else is, phone Interrelate on 1300 473 528.

For 24 hour assistance call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732), the National Sexual Assault, Family and Domestic Violence Help Line or in an emergency, phone Triple-0.

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