Adjournment: Family Violence
Ms SPENCE (Yuroke) (19:08:26) — (14 201) My adjournment matter is for the Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence, and the action I seek is for the minister to provide me with an update on the local impact of the Andrews Labor government’s investment in addressing family violence. As the minister knows, the City of Hume unfortunately has some of the highest rates of family violence in Victoria. It is a concern for people of all ages and backgrounds across the Yuroke electorate. In particular I note the work of groups like the Oorja Foundation, which addresses this issue at a grassroots level.
Yuroke residents have welcomed the Andrews Labor government’s commitment to addressing family violence, including implementing every recommendation from the Royal Commission into Family Violence and making the largest ever investment into tackling the issue. I will be very pleased to pass on any information that the minister can provide about progress made to address this issue in Yuroke.
I am pleased to provide an update on initiatives in the Hume Moreland DHHS area, where Yuroke is located. In 2017-18, DHHS has committed over $6.4 million to address family violence in the Hume Moreland area. This funding incorporates a range of initiatives including:
$30,000 for Aboriginal specific case management family violence services.
$330,000 for crisis support accommodation for victim survivors of family violence – 12 month funding was allocated for 24 hour, 7 days per week family violence refuge operations.
$600,000 for therapeutic responses – this comprises counselling services for women and children and therapeutic demonstration projects to trial new and innovative programs for victim survivors.
$120,000 to provide face-to-face after-hours responses to victim survivors of family violence as the majority of family violence incidents occur outside of office hours.
$2.05 million for intake and specialist case management responses to ensure victim survivors are kept safe and are supported in their recovery.
$830,000 for Men’s Behaviour Change Programs and men’s intake services that keep perpetrators in view and hold them to account for their actions.
$1.56 million for flexible support packages that provide financial assistance of up to $10,000 to help victim survivors recover from the trauma of family violence.
In addition, DHHS has expended $940,000 on a range of other initiatives (for example family violence funding for National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness, Personal Safety Initiative funding and specialist family violence advisors in alcohol and other drugs and mental health services) to address family violence in the Hume Moreland area.
The government has also taken action to work with local councils to prevent family violence. As part of the First Action Plan of the Free from Violence strategy to prevent family violence councils, including the City of Hume have been invited to apply for grants of up to $100,000 each to support new and existing programs. Applications close on 30 May 2018.
The 2018-19 State Budget provided $49.9 million over four (4) years and $2.5 million ongoing for family violence therapeutic and flexible support initiatives, and $27.7 million over four (4) years and $7.6 million ongoing for after-hours refuge responses for victims of family violence. This will result in increased investment to services across the state, including the Hume Moreland area.
Hon Natalie Hutchins MP
Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence