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Quartermaine says violence has no place in culture

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 7 January 2004


The acting head of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission says domestic violence in Indigenous communities has reached epidemic proportions.

Lionel Quartermaine says drugs and alcohol can no longer be used an excuse for violence.

Mr Quartermaine says ATSIC needs to focus on the real issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

He says those issues include protecting the rights of women and children.

"Domestic violence was never and should never be a part of our culture," Mr Quartermaine said.

He says people who are violent should face the full force of the law.

"We need to be responsible for our own actions," he said.

He says each of ATSIC's 35 regional councils will be given $200,000 in funding to help implement domestic violence education programs.


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