Preventing violence against women

If we change unfair and harmful attitudes and treatment of people based on gender, we can stop sexual harassment, discrimination and violence before it starts.

"We are not allowed to talk about these things because the people who create this culture are titans of industry. If you speak you do so at your own peril and can risk your entire career. We are voiceless" Starts with Us research participant


This includes within the legal and justice sector, which employs about 32,000 people in Victoria and impacts all of us.


The Starts With Us reports show Victoria’s legal and justice sector fails to treat women equally, the underlying driver of men’s violence against women. 


Outdated and unfair workplace practices and cultures hold the problem in place.

It Starts with all of us

Our Starts With Us campaign is driving action on gender equality across the legal and justice sector.


Women’s Legal Service Victoria is working with organisations from across the legal and justice sector to make our workplaces equal, fairer and safer for women.

Our partners have a wide reach across the legal and justice workforce: Victoria Legal Aid Federation of Community Legal Centres the Victorian Bar Law Institute of Victoria Slater and Gordon Lander & Rogers


We are asking legal and justice organisations to:

      • Make a genuine commitment to preventing violence against women in the workplace, backed up with leadership endorsement, skill development and resourcing
      • Meaningfully engage with all their staff to critically reflect on their own power and privilege and understand the nature and impacts of intersectional forms of discrimination and inequality in their organisation
      • Make it safe for people to speak up about their experiences and report abuse
      • Give women the opportunity to lead and remove barriers to progressing their career
      • Engage people of all genders to improve gender equality
      • Centre the voices of those who have experienced discrimination at the heart of any action to bring about change


Together, we will create a framework and tools for all legal and justice workplaces to use so that everyone is valued and treated as equals regardless of gender. 

I work in the legal or justice sector, what can I do?

We can all support the prevention of violence against women. If you work in the legal and justice sector, we ask you:

      • Champion equal and respectful relations between and among people of all genders
      • Read our Starts with Us research reports and share them with your networks
      • Contact us: [email protected] 

Our sector can and must be part of Victoria’s efforts to eliminate sexism and gender inequality as the underlying drivers of violence against women.

Research Reports

Two women sitting in a room talking to each other. The woman closest to the camera has her back to the camera.


This project is funded by the Victorian Government as part of the Free From Violence strategy and is part of a state-wide coordinated effort to prevent violence against women. We thank our Steering Committee and Consortium Partners throughout this work.