Fifty-two roses were laid at a temporary plaque in Randwick honouring victims of domestic and family violence on Wednesday to mark Domestic Violence Awareness Day.
Randwick mayor Dylan Parker was joined by fellow councillors, crisis workers, nurses, Federal Member for Kingsford Smith Matt Thistlethwaite and State Member for Coogee Marjorie O’Neill for the vigil, which included a minute of silence in memory of the 52 women, on average, who lose their lives to domestic and family violence every year.
“It is vital that we, as a community, continue to talk about domestic violence and ensure that women feel safe to ask for help, knowing they will be believed and supported,” Cr Parker said.
The day, which occurs on the first Wednesday of May, is nationally recognised and is intended to “raise community awareness of the social and personal impacts” of violence and the “support available to those affected”, the Domestic Violence Prevention Centre said.
Vigil to become annual event
Council will install a permanent memorial on the western side of High Cross Park in Randwick in the coming months.
The vigil will also become an annual event held every May 4.
“This plaque is a reminder that we must speak up when we see instances of control, abuse or violence. We cannot stay silent because it is not a private matter, hidden away in other people’s homes,” Parker said.
“We want to keep the conversation going and we want to let women know that if they need help, we will support them.”
Although statistics from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (up to December 2021) have shown that domestic violence-related murder has decreased, the downward trend has been at only 2.7 per cent each year.