OPINION: What is the answer to stop domestic violence?
IT IS a milestone not to be proud of - a man from our region has been sentenced with the new 'non-fatal strangulation in a domestic violence setting' charge.
This man admitted to using his forearm to choke his ex-partner, after hitting her with a broom stick and before punching her in the face.
He will be back in the community by June next year.
He is one of the first for the Wide Bay Burnett district to be sentenced and convicted of the new charge, which was introduced in May this year, but he will not be the last.
Police on the Fraser Coast are called to domestic violence-related incidents almost every day, and the region's courthouses are often filled with re-offenders.
Despite the education programs and the rehabilitation options given to offenders, domestic violence remains a true scourge on our community.
For judges and magistrates to consider strangulation as a particularly horrific way to hurt someone is a good start, but often domestic violence offenders are given immediate parole or a suspended sentence and told 'not to do it again'.
Some may argue longer jail terms would be the answer, but is keeping a violent offender in a facility with other violent offenders really the best way to stop them from being violent?
I don't know what the solution is, but I know the more we unite as a community against domestic violence, the closer we come to finding the solution.