COURTS and police are dealing with an increasingly heavy workload due to a rising number of applications for personal violence orders.
Albury court registrar Brian Fenn said there had been a 9 per cent increase in applications in the past 12 months.
Some weeks there could be as many as 30 or 40 personal or domestic violence order applications listed, with each application taking up considerable court and administration time.
Many of the increasing applications for personal violence orders are related to social networking website Facebook.
Mr Fenn said many of the orders sought were for relatively minor matters where mediation would be more appropriate.
He said mediation provided a safe and informal environment for people to talk to each other, and had a success rate of 80 per cent.
“There are specially trained mediators from community justice centres in place to try and resolve disputes,” Mr Fenn said.
In the past, Albury magistrate Gordon Lerve said that matters that came before court were more often not resolved and in some instances were aggravated by the process.
Albury police domestic violence liaison offi cer Sen- Constable Joanne Gallant said processing apprehended violence applications impacted on police as well.
“Police have to serve these applications before court and any orders made by it.
“This is part of our job but if some of these applications could be dealt with by parties attempting mediation then ...
police can focus on their core duties.”
Mr Fenn said when applying for AVOs, many people believed it was just a matter of turning up to court to get an order in place.
But he said they needed to prove on the balance of probabilities a fear for their safety.
Mr Fenn said the applicant for any order had to submit all relevant information with a response from the other party following.
A magistrate imposes time constraints on both sides and the matter then returns to court for the allocation of a hearing date when a final decision on the application is made.
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