"Domestic violence orders not long enough”

A CABOOLTURE father says five-year minimum domestic violence orders won't stop him from fearing for his daughter's life.

After seeing first-hand the devastating effects domestic violence had on his daughter he started a petition last year to have the laws changed from two-year minimums to a lifelong order.

It was then tabled and submitted to parliament by Glass House MP Andrew Powell and the laws were changed from two to five-year minimums in August.

But the father, who we have chosen not to be identified to protect his daughter, said he still lives in fear of what 'could happen'.

"It's very difficult. We're constantly worried and if we don't hear from her for a couple of days we wonder what's happened," he said.

"There's no guarantee he'll move on and leave her alone."

Previously the onus was on the victim to renew the DVO every two years, which the father said was 'emotionally draining' for his daughter.

"She's got to relive it all again and lay it before the courts," he said.

"It's a ludicrous situation punishing the victim further.

"It's much better than it was and I commend them for what they've done, but I really think it needs to go a bit further; at least 10 years or so," he said.

"Obviously I would like to see it be a lifetime thing where they can have it lifted (if the respondent rehabilitates)."

Mr Powell said he understood the issue around handing out lifelong DVO's, but supported the Caboolture father's plea.

"The original request was to enforce DVO for the whole natural life of the respondent unless ended by the court," Mr Powell said.

"There would be civil libertarians who would say they need every right to justice possible, but I think community standards say, 'hang on - they've done the wrong thing and they need to reform'."

A Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services spokeswoman said there were mechanisms in place to extend DVO's further than five years.

"The Bill proposes that a protection order can last until the day stated in the order by the court," she said.

"While this requirement to specify a 'day' on which the order ends would prevent courts imposing indefinite orders, a court may order that a protection order continues for any period the court considers necessary or desirable to protect the aggrieved person.

"Therefore, a court could make an order for a period longer than five years if it is satisfied such an order is necessary to protect the aggrieved person."

For 24-hour support in Queensland, phone DVConnect on 1800811811, MensLine on 1800600636 or 1800RESPECT on 1800737732.

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