Ms PATTEN (Northern Metropolitan) (12:35:29) — Last night I attended the candlelight vigil at Princes Park for Eurydice Dixon. It was an event that, not surprisingly, brought the community together. Thousands of us stood in the darkness of Princes Park. We stood in silence. We stood in solidarity. We reflected on the inhumanity that we saw and heard about last week. It was a time for us to unite in grief, to mourn the loss of a beautiful young woman and to try to regain some peace and hope in the face of so much sadness; to stand not only in protest but in determination to act; to ensure that this is not about advising women to be careful when they walk alone, nor is it about calling for more police to be stationed in our parks at night, nor is it about suggesting that all men are to blame. It is about working out what we need to do to change.
We must not accept any violence, but we must also remember that violence against a woman is rarely perpetrated by a stranger. Statistically women are still far safer in a dark park than we are at home. We can and we must change this. Eurydice Dixon’s rape and murder has shaken us all, not just in Victoria but around Australia. The pain that her family and friends are enduring must be immeasurable. I hope that last night offered some comfort, and I am sure that the thoughts of all of us remain with them.