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Changing the Conversation Annual Conference

In Northern Ireland, we have seen progression over a number of years in terms of how society views domestic violence. Domestic violence is a serious crime which we know often goes unreported. We are, however, encouraged to see more and more women coming forward to report domestic violence and seek support.

Our Conference “Changing the Conversation” will bring together our partner agencies who have worked, and continue to work with us to address domestic violence, changing the mindset and conversations of the public along the way.

But how far have we progressed in changing the narrative around domestic violence and what more needs to be done to tackle, prevent and respond to domestic violence moving forward? There are still many challenges that women, support services and partner agencies are facing.  For example, gaps in coercive control and stalking legislation in Northern Ireland which continue to see us lag behind the rest of the UK. Non-fatal strangulation, a prevalent issue in domestic violence, is another example of legislative challenges proving difficult to overcome and prosecute. This will be one of the complex issues the conference will address.

The Conference will aim by way of innovative contributors, to:
  • Discuss prevailing attitudes on how society perceives, and to what extent, tolerates domestic violence.
  • Bring together legal and social policy makers, key practitioners and interested individuals who have worked to change the conversation regarding domestic violence and explore the challenges they continue to face.
  • Provide a forum for participants to examine and understand the complex dynamics involved in domestic violence, coercive control and non-fatal strangulation.
  • Provide insight in to the social, legal and cultural reasons for the current failure to ensure effective prevention, support, protection and justice strategies for women and children.
  • Present recommendations to how best to move forward to continue to challenge societal attitudes towards domestic violence.

We are delighted to welcome a range of national and international speakers, including;

  • The newly appointed Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales, Nicole Jacobs
  • Gunilla Ekberg, Senior Researcher and Human Rights Lawyer, Institute for Feminism and Human Rights, Sweden
  • Graham Goulden, Director, Cultivating Minds UK
  • Dr Farah Yusuf, Forensic Physician, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Michelle Meldrum, Executive Director, Gentoo
  • Marianne O’Kane, Senior Assistant Director, PPS
  • DCI McBurney PSNI Public Protection Unit and Caroline Conway, PPS Policy & Information Unit
  • Dympna McKeown, Counsellor, Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid


Tickets: Our Early Bird tickets are priced at £40pp if booked before the end of December. Later bookings will be charged at £50pp. This price includes a buffet lunch.

To book a ticket, please email with your name and contact details.

For any more information, please call 02890 666049

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