STATE borders are no barrier to perpetrators of domestic violence but they do act as barriers to implementing Domestic Violence Orders.
That could all be about to change if Queensland follows NSW in recognising and enforcing DVOs from across the border.
Tweed state Nationals MP Geoff Provest said the NSW Parliament had voted on and passed legalisation which would see that state’s police enabled to enforce a DVO even if it was issued outside of NSW.
Mr Provest, who spoke in Parliament on the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Amendment (National Domestic Violence Orders Recognition) Bill, said there had been unanimous support for the Bill which was now being gazetted into legalisation.
He said the National Domestic Violence Order Scheme would provide increased protection across jurisdictional borders by enabling automatic recognition and enforcement of DVOs made in other jurisdictions.
“This Bill will mean that DVOs issued in Queensland will be recognised and enforceable in NSW which will play a major difference, especially in a border community like Tweed Heads,” Mr Provest said.
“At the moment, a victim of domestic violence who might be living in Tweed Heads and has a DVO issued in NSW against a perpetrator who might be living in Coolangatta or Kirra, could be confronted in Queensland and nothing could be done about it.
“The victim would have to go to court and have another DVO taken out in Queensland to ensure their safety … The same currently applied from Queensland into NSW but with this Bill that will change.
“For the safety and security of all victims of domestic violence, recognition of a DVO, no matter in which state it was issued, should be recognised.
“I would sincerely like to see a national scheme implemented but for now, I would welcome a mutual agreement between NSW and Queensland.”
Currumbin state LNP MP Jann Stuckey said there needed to be at least a signing of a Memorandum Of Understand between Queensland and NSW which would carry far more weight than a lot of “fluffy words” from our the premier.
“The border is very porous and there needs to be far greater collaboration and information-sharing between the states when it came to matters regarding personal issues such as domestic violence,” Ms Stuckey said.
“I think this could be addressed in an MOU signed by both Premier Mike Baird and Annastacia Palaszczuk and the sooner the better.
“We live in a unique area and offenders shouldn’t be able to find protection simply by crossing a road (which marks the border).”
In December last year at the Council of Australian Governments (COAG), all states and territories committed to introducing similar laws by July to create a national recognition scheme.
NSW Attorney-General Gabrielle Upton said the scheme needed the co-operation of all the jurisdictions involved to bring in the laws in order for the system to work.