Field, Renata

Renata Joy Field


The journey of older women and the Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Services of NSW

The Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service of New South Wales (WDVCAS) offers support and advocacy for women experiencing domestic and family violence, with older women growing into an ever-larger cohort of our clients. This presentation will use a case study approach to demonstrate some of the issues faced by women we work with, as they seek a life free from violence. WDVCAS NSW’s case study will demonstrate the complex journey of older women being supported by the Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service. Elements include interactions with police and a complex justice system, unique experiences of abuse which may fit outside the criminal offences of domestic and family violence, health issues and access to health services and a lack of services adequately equipped to support women experiencing elder abuse. The case study will also raise the complexities of abuse within a relationship where either the older person relies on someone for care or are relied upon for care. This case study will help workers and services across the sector to recognise elder abuse, and discuss ways to recognise and respond to elder abuse amongst women collaboratively: working together with the older person to achieve a life free of violence.

Renata Field, WDVCAS NSW director, holds a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Sydney and brings to the role more than 10 years’ experience in the not-for-profit community sector. Renata has previously worked in the women’s refuge sector and researching violence against women.