Media Release – Podcast Series on the Australian Legal System Empowers Women

Release: Thursday 10 June, 2021

A new podcast series designed to empower women and encourage allies highlights the challenges within the Australian legal system.

Senator Anne Ruston, Federal Minister for Women’s Safety, today officially launched “Rule of Thumb” which is a series of two podcasts funded through the Commonwealth Government’s Women’s Safety Package and through the State Government’s Communities Tasmania COVID-19 response.

The podcast is a collaboration between Women’s Legal Service Tasmania and Healthy Tasmania providing up-to-date information for women navigating the legal aspects of family violence and separation in a conversational way.

Containing candid conversations with lawyers and people with lived experience and with community who have intervened where they have seen abuse, the series illustrates the barriers facing women and steps them through the process. The podcasts also improves community awareness about what family violence looks like and what you can do.

CEO of the Women’s Legal Service Tasmania, Yvette Cehtel, said the podcast was a way of giving free information to the community in an interesting and easily accessible format.

“Specialist women’s services work with family violence every day and see the far reaching impact of gender inequality. This means we are in an ideal position to produce targeted resources at a community level that speak to the needs of the community.”

“The podcasts talk about the family violence system and aims to increase all of our knowledge about what we can do when we see family violence in our communities.”

“Family violence is all of our business and we need to improve our individual capacity and confidence to respond in safe ways.”

“We know that family violence has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns. This podcast is a way of sharing knowledge and making sure it can get to the people who need it, where they need it and when they need it.”

The term “Rule of Thumb” comes from a common historic opinion that men were able to beat their wives as long as the stick used was no thicker than their thumb.

“This podcast challenges traditional views, while also drawing attention to the structural inequities that remain,” Ms Cehtel said.

Minister Ruston said she was pleased to support the Women’s Legal Service Tasmania launch their podcast.

“Hearing the experiences of women, lawyers and counsellors on the Rule of Thumb podcast will help guide a woman should she ever have to navigate her way through the complexities of the family law system.”

Series two of the podcast has a focus on what to do if you are a bystander to family violence, including controlling behaviour, and information on behavioural change. Men also share how they have changed their thoughts and actions around violence and misogyny.

Ms Cehtel said the podcast was intended to be useful for people all around Australia and thanked the Commonwealth Government and the State Government for their funding.

“Rule of Thumb” can be found on Whooshka and other streaming services. For further information, please contact:

Ms Yvette Cehtel
Chief Executive Officer
Women’s Legal Service Tasmania Phone 03 6231 9466

Angela Wilson
0487 325 217