Family violence incidents jumped in Victoria as the state emerged from its COVID-19 lockdowns, new data shows.
The Crime Statistics Agency (CSA) on Friday released findings that revealed police recorded 7981 more incidents of family violence in 2020 compared to 2019, representing an uplift of 9.4 per cent.
This increase mirrors a three-year trend, CSA said.
There was a 15.3 per cent increase in June last year, and a 16.1 per cent increase in October, according to CSA's COVID-19 family violence data portal, suggesting increases in reporting of family violence were linked to the easing of the lockdowns.
Family- or sexual violence-related ambulance callouts were also higher during every month of 2020 compared with the same month in 2019, with the exceptions of November and December.
In these two months, there was a decrease of 13.7 per cent and 20.9 per cent respectively in callouts.
CSA chief statistician Fiona Dowsley said while the data suggests the number of incidents recorded and services provided was higher throughout 2020 compared to 2019, significant spikes in police-recorded incidents occurred as lockdown restrictions eased.
This, Ms Dowsley said, emphasised the importance of "considering potential barriers to reporting faced by victim survivors when lockdown measures are in place".
Victoria's 2016 Royal Commission into Family Violence recommended establishing the data portal as part of its findings.
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Australian Associated Press