The Turnbull Budget locks in Abbott’s cuts to domestic violence services and subjects women’s legal and housing services, which help women escape violence, to massive funding cuts from next financial year.
Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens deputy leader and spokesperson for women, said:
“We are in a national domestic violence crisis. Services are underfunded and overstretched, but despite the Prime Minister’s rhetoric about domestic violence the Budget fails the victims of domestic violence.
“While there is funding for a domestic violence plan and an advertising campaign, there is no long-term funding boost to women’s shelters and legal services needed to cope with increasing demand.
“Once a taboo topic, domestic violence is now a high profile issue, with more and more women are bravely reaching out for the support they need to escape.
“Even though demand is increasing, the Turnbull Government has locked in the Abbott 30 per cent cut from mid 2017 year to community legal centres, which help women escape domestic violence.
“The budget fails to provide secure funding for Aboriginal specialist legal services such as Family Violence Prevention Legal Services and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services.
“Women’s shelters are already having to turn women away, leaving them to face homelessness.
“But from mid-2017 the Turnbull Government is cutting off funding for the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness, which funds specialist homelessness programs including women’s shelters.
“The Liberals’ Budget locks in Tony Abbott’s funding cuts of $44 million from the construction of new shelters and $235 million from rental affordability programs.
“Family violence is the biggest cause of homelessness in Australia and, despite the Turnbull Government’s rhetoric, it is leaving women and their children to face the impossible decision of homelessness or violence,” Senator Waters said.
Contact – Monique Vandeleur 0419 626 725