Commonwealth Bank Customer Advocate, Dr Brendan French, is this week meeting representatives from consumer groups and business leaders in Launceston and Hobart as part of a nationwide program to help the bank better understand and represent the needs of customers and communities.
As part of the visit, Dr French also launched a new "Addressing Financial Abuse" guide to help Tasmanian support workers and people experiencing financial abuse in the community.
"We know that financial abuse can impact the long-term financial wellbeing of our customers, particularly women, and that it plays a significant role in domestic and family violence," Dr French said.
"Financial abuse is a common form of family violence, but often difficult to detect. This guide will assist Tasmanian support workers who play an important role helping people affected by this serious form of domestic violence."
Operating separately from the day-to-day running of Commonwealth Bank’s business, the Customer Advocate team assists customers who are disadvantaged, experiencing hardship, or face other special circumstances. It includes a dedicated team offering individual and small business customers an independent alternative when resolving complaints.
For further information about the Commonwealth Bank Customer Advocate, visit www.commbank.com.au/customeradvocate
1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) is the 24/7 National Sexual Assault and Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service.
About Commonwealth Bank’s response to domestic and family violence
The Tasmania-specific booklet is developed in consultation with Sexual Assault Support Service, Tasmania (SASS) and is the second version to be released since the NSW booklet was launched in June.
The "Addressing Financial Abuse" guide developed in partnership with DVNSW is part of a series of initiatives by Commonwealth Bank to help end domestic and family violence in Australia in a generation. In May, CBA announced a $900,000 support package to Financial Counselling Australia (FCA) and the Jan Pentland Foundation to improve the skills of the financial counselling industry, particularly relating to the role played by financial abuse in domestic and family violence.
Addressing Financial Abuse is one of many elements in Commonwealth Bank's Financial Inclusion Action Plan, which includes being part of a movement to end domestic and family violence in Australia in a generation. The Commonwealth Bank's response is part of its corporate responsibility plan, Opportunity Initiatives, and the Group's support for gender equality and financial wellbeing in Australia, understanding that disparities both contribute to domestic and family violence.
State and territory-specific guides for Victoria, ACT, the Northern Territory, Western Australia, South Australia and Queensland will be produced in the coming months.
If your organisation would like copies of the booklet for any state or territory, please email firstname.lastname@example.org