A Family Violence and Animals motion passed unanimously in the Victorian Parliament on 3 March 2021. As a result companion animals will be redefined as ‘family members’ under the Family Violence Protection Act 2008. Research evidence indicates the link between abuse of animals and family violence.
The Victorian Government has made a commitment to ensure more robust protections for animals in situations of family violence.
The motion advocated for several other policy and legislative options. These included:
- financial assistance to victim survivors, including for the care of animals
- companion animals are placed in the care of either the victim survivor or other appropriate carers to protect them.
(Source: Animal Justice Party website, 25.3.21)