Happy International Women’s Day 2014, and thank you to all the women who have inspired me, motivated me and informed me. Together we do better.

Last week I wrote an article for South West Victoria’s online magazine Bluestone. My article asked readers to consider how we view domestic violence in comparison to how we view random acts of violence against strangers. I believe that we have quite a long way to go before – as a community – we see domestic violence as a serious crime worthy of all the media attention and community outrage that other forms of violence attract.

The theme for 2014 IWD is “Equality for women is progress for all” and until we actually understand the meaning of equality, and take meaningful action towards achieving it the inequality women and girls continue to experience will mean that they continue to be at risk of, or a victim of gender based violence. Violence against women is both a cause and an effect of inequality, and this is where we must direct our ongoing efforts. We continue to respond to women in crisis and we continue our efforts to prevent all forms of violence against women and girls but we must also pay attention to gender inequality as the root cause of gender based violence.

Here in south west Victoria I will be working with other feminists to take action on gender inequality, prevention of VAW and organising for IWD in 2015. Because we still need to.