Domestic violence in the spotlight at symposium

Professor Lesley Chenoweth AO is in the top 10 of Australia’s most influential women for 2015.
Professor Lesley Chenoweth AO will present the welcome address at the Equity Symposium.

The far-reaching effects of violence in the home wasconsidered at a Brisbane forum on Wednesday, November 25.

The Honourable Shannon Fentiman MP, Minister for Communities, Women and Youth, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for Multicultural Affairs openedthe Griffith University Equity Symposium at the Sir Samuel Griffith Building, Nathan campus.

The symposium highlightedthe broad impacts of domestic violence. Featuring a panel of speakers, it provided a range of perspectives on issues including health, social, criminology/law, economic and Indigenous.

Professor Lesley Chenoweth, Pro Vice Chancellor Logan Campus, said one in five Australian women and one in 20 Australian men had experienced violence at the hands of an intimate partner or parent.

“All sides of government, industry and the community at large now recognise the significant economic and social cost of this activity. It is a moral imperative that we address this as a whole community and universities have an important role to play ’’ she said.

“It is fitting that the Griffith Equity Symposium is held during the White Ribbon campaign, a campaign to stop violence against women that starts on 25 November and continues to 6 December.

“Griffith University has already made considerable contributions to addressing domestic violence through its teaching and research and we hope that events such as this provide a way forward to eliminating violence against women.”


Dr Kathleen Baird, Director of Midwifery and Nursing Education: Dr Baird is committed to providing women-centred care in pregnancy. Her research focuses on women’s experiences of domestic violence during pregnancy.

Ms Zoe Rathus AM, Griffith Law School

Zoe Rathus is Director of the Legal Clinic which allows students to work with community organisations that offer legal advice to disadvantaged people. In 2011 Zoe was made a member of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to family law and the rights of women and children.

Professor Patrick O’Leary, School of Human Services and Social WorkPatrick O’Leary has a distinguished research career in child protection, domestic violence and social work. He has undertaken research in the Middle East and Asia and specialised in child protection in Islamic countries.

Associate Professor Chris Fleming, Griffith Business School

Chris Fleming is an applied micro-economist with teaching, consulting and public policy experience. In 2015, he was appointed as MBA Director in the Griffith Business School.

Magistrate Zachery Sarra

Zachary Sarra is an Indigenous magistrate at the Wynnum Court House and a strong advocate of raising domestic violence awareness within the community.