Write a letter to the editor of your local paper about family violence

Both major parties want us to think they're addressing Australia's family violence crisis. But they're not.

The election promise so far from both Labor and the Coalition fall woefully short of the $4 billion needed to fund family violence services, and keep families and women safe.

That's why it's critical we keep the issue on the media agenda. Can you take 5 minutes to write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper, to make sure they know their readers want to see family violence funding stay on the agenda?

Click on the steps below to find out how:

Step 1. Find the 'letter to the editor' details for your local paper, or favourite paper, in Eden-Monaro 

  • Eden Magnet - ben.smyth@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Monaro Post - editor@monaropost.com.au
  • Bega District News - ben.smyth@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Tumut-Adelong Times - news@tatimes.com.au
  • Riverina Leader - djohns@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Southern Times - nreynolds@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Bombala Times - mail.bombalatimes@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Merimbula News Weekly - ben.smyth@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Narooma News - stan.gorton@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Braidwood Times - alex.rea@fairfaxmedia.com.au
  • Queanbeyan Age - kimberley.lelievre@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Want to contact a paper not on our list? You should be able to find the contact information for your area's newspaper by simply googling 'send a letter to the editor' and the name of the paper.

Step 2. Write a quick letter 

Usually, three or four sentences will be the right length for your letter.

Mentioning your personal connection or interest in the issue is key - maybe you know someone who has relied on family violence services, work at a local service, or are concerned that vulnerable local families are protected? Be sure to include this -- it's what is needed to get a letter published.

Then you might want to mention one key piece of information about the funding situation. Here are some examples:

  • Thousands of women are being left without access to the services they need to escape their abuser.
  • Specialist services aren't funded to respond to even all the police referrals they get. There are more women seeking refuges than the refuges are funded to take.
  • Neither the Coalition or Labor have committed to provide the funding necessary to address the family violence crisis.
  • The Victorian Government recently announced $572 million just to deal with service and system gaps in just one state. Services are calling for the Federal Government to match Victoria's scale of per capita investment - that would be $4 billion from the federal government.
  • Women will often need legal advice and assistance to escape an abuser - but right now Community Legal Centres are being forced to turn away 160,000 people a year, including women affected by violence. The Coalition are planning to cut funding for these centres by 30% from 2017.
For more information you can check out Fair Agenda's campaign on family violence (click on 'More information').

And remember - even if it's not your letter that gets picked to be published, the number of letters on this issue will tell the newspapers' editors that this is something that matters to readers - and may prompt further reporting on family violence. So every letter helps make sure family violence is on their radar!

Step 3. Send your letter (and send us a copy)!

Finally, hit send!

If your local paper just has an email address - put 'letter to the editor' in the subject line of your email, and then put a heading on the letter you email as well.

Finally, please send the team a quick email at info@fairagenda.org to let us know where you've sent your letter (or better still, cc us in to your email), so we can keep an eye on that paper, and collect all the letters published!