OPINION: We need to do more to combat violence against women
THE last 12 months have been an appalling time for the safety of women on the Fraser Coast.
After reviewing the events of 2015, one thing is clear in my mind for 2016 - the Fraser Coast needs to do better.
The last week has been particularly sobering with two women allegedly sexually assaulted while on their own at night.
Unfortunately those two events were only two in a string of violent incidents against women in 2015.
The year was filled with horrific acts against women, most perpetrated by men.
In March, June Wallis was found dead in her Pacific Haven home.
Her husband, Nathan Peter Norman Greenfield was accused of murdering her and the case is progressing through the court system.
Just months later, elderly Eli Waters woman Norma Ludlum was allegedly attacked in her home.
She died of injuries to her head on July 6.
The man accused for her death, Frederick Ronald Sinfield, was remanded in custody while the case is dealt with by the courts.
Then in September, in an abhorrent, public act, former Maryborough woman Karina Lock was shot dead at a Gold Coast McDonald's by her husband Steve Lock.
Mr Lock later died.
These hideous acts are not alone or isolated.
In June 2015 almost one person a day on the Fraser Coast was assaulted or harassed by someone breaching a domestic violence protection order.
In the 2013-2014 financial year 512 domestic violence protection orders were put in place by the Hervey Bay and Maryborough Magistrates Courts combined.
The figures for the 2014-2015 year are yet to be released.
It is clear these disgusting incidents are going to keep happening unless we as a community do something about it.
So for 2016, make your resolution be to not sit idly by; to stand up and say no.
Violence against women is simply not going to be accepted on the Fraser Coast.