The Courier Mail reported that a man was charged with three breaches of domestic violence orders, although you wouldn’t know this from the headline. Losing his home, his job and his wife was not the reason for his court appearance. These are terrible things to deal with but they’re not crimes and you don’t go to court for them. 

The article also provided a detailed description of the economic and social difficulties the man said he had faced because of his ex-wife. But there was no background on why the DVOs were issued, nor was there any information about the victim or anything she may have suffered. 

Maybe this information was not provided to the court, but it’s difficult to know for sure given  the victim was only mentioned in relation to the claims he made against her and the “mental anguish” he suffered because of the things he said she did.

The CM did include one quote from the Magistrate that provided some context to the seriousness of breaching DVOs:

“If a court makes an order, we don’t hand them out like stickers,’’ Ms Vasta said. “We put a lot of thought into DVOs. If someone continues to flout orders, victims end up with no faith in the system.’’ 

Apart from those two sentences, the rest of the article was entirely focussed on the poor, poor man and the evil woman who did him wrong. 

If all his claims are true he certainly deserves sympathy, but breaching DV orders is not a trivial matter and his choice to do so is his responsibility, not hers. Reporting it as another misfortune he suffered because of his ex-wife is inaccurate and irresponsible.

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the media’s constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it – even $5 a month makes a big difference – please consider becoming a Patron

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