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While the word crisis brings to mind events like September 11 or the Anthrax issue crisis could simply be a label attached to a particular set of social circumstances trying to draw attention to the fact that something out of the ordinary is happening taking us away from a desirable state of affairs McConnell 2003 393 Domestic violence against women can be thought of such an issue that does indeed take us away from desirable state of affairs In a 1998 South Australian study that interviewed 3001 people eighteen percent reported that they had experienced some form of domestic violence Of this eighteen percent 66 were women and 34 were men While this statistic is alarming in its own right the number of women hurt due to physical abuse was 505 as opposed to only 165 of men Bagshaw Chung 2000 3 - 13 These as well as statistical findings by a number of studies illustrate that violence against women is a serious and widespread problem and requires strong commitment from both the government and society The womens liberation movement in the 1970s resulted in a national conference outlining political demands based around childcare abortion rights equal work and pay rights and end of sexism This can be seen as the beginning of an active political quest to end domestic violence in Australia Bagshaw Chung 2000 1 Porter 2002 381 In 1983 under Prime Minister Hawke a policy advisory agency the Office for the Status for Women OSW within the Prime Ministers Department was established in place of Adviser to the Prime Minister in Womens Affairs and continues to exist to date Porter 2002 389 We will examine previous and ongoing policy towards addressing the issue However in doing so we will use an analytical tool the policy cycle to give the policy development process structure and clarity rather than studying it as random events spread over thirty years Bridgman Davis 2003
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