Debate erupts over domestic violence

Blacktown Councillor and Labor candidate for Seven Hills Susai Benjamin has come under fire from his Liberal rival. Picture: Helen Nezdropa

Blacktown Councillor and Labor candidate for Seven Hills Susai Benjamin has come under fire from his Liberal rival. Picture: Helen Nezdropa

THE political games have kicked off, seven months out from the state election.

Labor candidate for Seven Hills Susai Benjamin has hit back at claims made about him by Liberal rival Mark Taylor.

Mr Taylor and Baulkham Hills MP David Elliott attacked the Blacktown councillor and lawyer about comments made in a Law Society Journal article two years ago.

It quotes Mr Benjamin, concerned about recent arrivals to Australia, calling the police to act as counsellors in domestic violence situations.

Mr Taylor called on Labor to stand Mr Benjamin down.

"In my police career, I have seen all too often the impact domestic violence has on women, and anyone who encourages the covering up of domestic violence needs to reassess their own ethical conduct," Mr Taylor said.

Party officials assured the Sun Mr Benjamin will remain the Labor candidate.

Mr Benjamin said his comments about the need for community education were misunderstood.

"It is my view, and it will continue to be my view, that domestic violence cannot be tolerated under any circumstances," Mr Benjamin said.

"It is simply unacceptable.

"In my many years as a voluntary community work and voluntary solicitor, I have seen the damaging impact of domestic violence.

"I have also become aware that as a society we need to offer better education on the role of police for some of the more recent arrivals in this country.

"Everyone in our communities needs to understand that police must act, and will act, in matters of domestic violence and this is a protection offered to those who find themselves as victims of this awful crime."

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