Women will now be able to check if their partner has been convicted of domestic violence under new trial program
- People in NSW can to apply for information about their partner’s past
- Right To Ask scheme is the first of its kind in Australia since 2016
- Aims at save lives and prevent them from becoming victims of abuse
Women can now check to see if their new partner has a past of domestic violence through a new government trial aimed at saving lives.
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet will launch the Right To Ask initiative on Monday aimed at keeping women safe and give them the power to make an informed decision when entering new relationships.
People will be able to apply for information about their partner’s past via a hotline or website, including previous domestic violence convictions.
The 12 month trial follows the tragic recent death in western Sydney of Dannielle Finlay-Jones, 31, allegedly killed by new boyfriend Ashley Gaddie whom she’d met on a dating app weeks earlier.
The Right To Ask scheme will be unveiled in NSW on Monday in the wake of the recent death of Dannielle Finlay-Jones (pictured)
Gaddie, 33, had been the subject of five separate AVOs from former partners in the last six years.
The Premier told The Daily Telegraph the new scheme will be worth it if it saves someone’s life.
‘There are simply too many heartbreaking stories of women and men being seriously hurt or murdered in circumstances where the perpetrators had a history of prior domestic and violent criminal offences that they didn’t know about,’ Mr Perrottet said.
Those who apply for information about their partners will be subject to ID checks and a statutory declaration confirming they’re in a relationship with the person they requesting information about.
The scheme is the first of its kind in Australia since 2016 when NSW trialled a similar program which had limited success and wasn’t widely accessed.
Police minister Paul Toole is confident the new scheme will be much more effective.
‘The dating landscape has shifted since then, with more and more people accessing dating apps and dating outside known friendship circles,’ he said.
The scheme aims to save lives by allowing people to check their partner’s past for any history of domestic violence (stock image)
NSW Police has also backed the trial.
‘We look forward to working … to get this up and running,’ Commissioner Karen Webb said.
The trial comes as officials from dating apps Bumble, Match and Grindr prepare to attend a national summit addressing online dating safety this week.
Federal communications Minister Michelle Rowland will convene Wednesday’s roundtable which will discuss how to prevent exploitation of online dating services, supporting users who experience harm and efforts to improve online dating safety.
Reporting processes, support for abuse victims and policies to hold perpetrators accountable are also on the agenda.
‘We need to ensure platforms have the appropriate safeguards for those who use them, and effective mechanisms to report an incident if something does go wrong,’ Ms Rowland said.
If you or someone you know needs support, contact 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732).
NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb hopes the new scheme will give people the power to make informed decisions when entering a new relationship