The Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) defines child abuse as:
- an assault (including sexual assault) of a child
- involving a child in sexual activity where the child is used as a sexual object, or there is an unequal power relationship between the child and the abuser
- exposing a child to family violence
- serious neglect of a child
What if I fear for my child’s safety because of family violence or child abuse?
If you believe that your children are unsafe with your partner, due to a risk of family violence or child abuse, get urgent legal advice. You may consider applying for an intervention order on their behalf to protect them, or making a report to the DHHS in Victoria or Police.
If you or your children’s immediate safety is at risk, notify Police on 000 or DHHS Child Protection Crisis Line 131 278 immediately.
Calling either DHHS or the police may result in them taking action with serious consequences for you and your family. Therefore, it is very important that you get legal advice if you are unsure about making a report.
If you are concerned that your child has been sexually abused, call Child Wise National Child Abuse Helpline 1800 991 099 or contact your nearest Centre Against Sexual Assault for counselling and support. Find your closest centre.