Kids ‘switch off’ when parents fight, say police

Tamra CarrMidwest Times
Community stakeholders network to come up with family violence prevention methods in Mt Magnet.
Camera IconCommunity stakeholders network to come up with family violence prevention methods in Mt Magnet.

In Senior Sergeant Todd D’Souza’s experience, there are a lot of sleepless nights for children stuck in violent homes.

Speaking during a recent Mount Magnet networking event, he urged people to remember the children snared in abusive relationships and the wider family members supporting survivors.

“When you see a couple fighting, you just look at the children and see them ... switch off,” Sen. Sgt D’Souza said.

“And you do what you’re taught, unfortunately.

“This is how it becomes the norm.”

According to the Domestic Violence Prevention Centre, children witnessing violent relationships suffer similarly to children who are abused themselves.

It can also manifest in poor concentration, disobedience, hyperactivity, aggression, nightmares, low self-esteem and a variety of other problems.

Mount Magnet families who survived domestic violence about 12 months ago were present at the networking event, which included staff from a variety of Geraldton and greater Mid West health and community organisations.

The event was organised by the WA Centre for Rural Health, as part of their activities during the anti-violence 16 Days in WA Campaign.

The campaign, launched on November 25, ended this week.

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