Calls for domestic violence probe in SA

The Australian Conservatives have called for an inquiry into domestic violence in South Australia.
The Australian Conservatives have called for an inquiry into domestic violence in South Australia.

The Australian Conservatives have called for an inquiry into domestic violence in South Australia and a $20 million fund to boost prevention and early intervention.

The measures are included in the party's domestic violence policy ahead of the March 17 election.

The party also wants specific laws introduced to deal with offenders, to avoid charges being laid under basic assault provisions, and for a presumption against bail.

"Domestic violence is complex but preventable as attitudes and behaviours can be modified over time.," Australian Conservatives MP and lead upper house candidate Robert Brokenshire said.

"Our policy addresses housing for victims, targeted prevention and education programs, and revamping laws to specifically deal with offenders."

Mr Brokenshire said an independent inquiry into domestic violence would provide a better picture of the full extent of the problem to allow the next government to formulate a comprehensive approach.

In the 2015/16 financial year, 8417 cases of domestic violence were reported to police in South Australia.

But Mr Brokenshire said his party was acutely aware that the figures only reflected those cases where police became involved.

There still isn't a cross-agency mechanism to record the full extent of offending.

Apart from SA's upper house, the Australian Conservatives are also running candidates in 33 of the state's 47 lower house seats.

At the party's campaign launch last month, its federal leader Cory Bernardi raised the prospect of reviving the debate over a high-level nuclear waste dump in the state's north to provide a massive boost to the local economy.

Australian Associated Press