“AS soon as I arrived he said he wanted to kill me, he said it was easy in Australia because there was so much bushland he could cut me into pieces and no one would find me.”
Those are the chilling words from a Griffith woman who has spoken about her terrifying experiences as a victim of domestic violence in order to lobby for more funding in theupcoming NSW budget.
Ayssia was married in Pakistan in 2004 in an arranged marriage.
“The violence started a week later when he started beating and abusing me,” she said.
“I went to my parents but they didn’t help - they said the violence was normal.
“The first time he beat me it was because his mother called me and I didn’t go to her quick enough - he kicked me in the back and slapped me across the face.
“One time he poured boiling water over me because I was pregnant with a girl and he didn’t want a girl. He broke my nose and smashed my head into the walls, he did whatever he wanted to.
“When my second daughter was born they wouldn’t let me go to the hospital. My husband told his sister to kill the baby if it was another girl. When she was born they just threw her on the floor and wanted to kill her.”
In 2014, after enduring 10 years of violence at the hands of her husband, Ayssia moved to Griffith.
“The violence got worse after that and he started threatening to kill me, he said he would kill us all because he didn’t want us,” she said.
While in hospital in Griffith, Ayssia met a Pakistani doctor who put her in contact with the city’s women’s refuge.
“I couldn’t leave straight away because they were waiting for a place at the refuge, and I was crying because my husband was in the waiting room because he wouldn’t let me go anywhere alone,” she said.
One morning, after her husband left for work, she took her two girls in a taxi and escaped to the refuge.
“It was so frightening because I didn’t know who to trust, but I walked in the door at the refuge and they were like angels,” she said.
Domestic violence services and refuges are stretched to capacity after the Baird government merged funding for domestic violence with homelessness in 2014, according to SOS Women’s Services.
Roxanne McMurray, a spokeswoman for the service, has urged the NSW government to follow the example set by the Victorian government, which has committed more than half a billion dollars to domestic violence after its Royal Commission handed down its findings.