02/09/2020 | Michelle Lensink MLC | Carolyn Power MP | Better Services | Lower Costs

More financial assistance for women experiencing domestic abuse, as well as additional funding to operate a state-first dedicated 24/7 men’s domestic violence hotline and support services are the key pillars of a $2.4 million funding boost.

The Federal Government funding injection, to help at-risk South Australians during the coronavirus pandemic, has enabled the Marshall Liberal Government to fast-track new measures and provide more support to ensure the safety of women and their children who are experiencing, or at risk of, domestic, family and sexual violence at this time.

The new, immediate measures include:

  • $700,000 for victim and survivor support including packages that cover transport, personal needs, health services and food, more financial planning support and fast-tracking the opening of safety hubs in the Limestone Coast and Whyalla regions from December 2020 to 2021
  • An additional $500,000 for perpetrator behavior change support services, allowing the 24/7 Men’s Referral Service, OARS ‘Don’t Become That Man” program and Kornar Winmil Yunti (KWY) to extend their services beyond December 2020, and fast-tracking services specifically targeted to men.
  • $1.2 million for services that respond to the needs of vulnerable people, community recovery initiatives and contingency funds to enable flexible responses as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve.
  • The funding allows support services to specifically respond to particularly vulnerable groups, including women living in remote areas, women living with disability, Aboriginal women and their children and LGBTIQA+ people.

Federal Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston said South Australia had shared in $4.8 million in Federal Government funding as part of a $150 million response package to support Australians experiencing domestic, family and sexual violence due to the fallout from COVID-19.

“We’re boosting domestic violence supports and services from counselling and helplines to behaviour change programs and emergency accommodation during the pandemic,” said Minister Ruston.

We’ve been working closely with the states and territories to deliver this funding to dedicated services on the frontline which work tirelessly to support vulnerable women and children across the country.”

Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the additional DV measures formed part of the Marshall Liberal Government’s strong response to support women and children at this time. “Any form of violence is unacceptable and must end,” said Minister Lensink.

“We want women experiencing violence or abuse in their homes to know that they are supported and there is help available if they need it.

“We’ve heard loud and clear from our front-line services the need to fund additional support services for perpetrators and that’s why we’ve committed an additional $500,000 for perpetrator behaviour change support services, so we can begin to break the cycle of violence before it’s too late.

“This additional $2.4 million allows us to fast-track measures to support at-risk women and children in South Australia, including particularly vulnerable groups such as women living in remote areas, women living with disability and Aboriginal women and their children.

“We aim to be agile and flexible with this funding and continue to evaluate the demand and success of these initiatives going forward.

“I really urge the public to remain vigilant and for women to seek help, if they need it – support is available and ready.” Assistant Minister for Domestic and Family Violence Carolyn Power said the Marshall Liberal Govenrment recognised supporting women experiencing abuse and violence was vital.

“We know that financial strain is often a barrier for many women leaving dangerous situations,” said Mrs Power. “If it’s not safe for a woman to stay at home, there are a range of support services and funding available to assist them when making difficult decisions about their safety.”

Mrs Power said DV services remain ready to help South Australian women and children in need. “All critical DV services have remained available and will we continue to do whatever we can to ensure women feel safe and supported and know where to turn for help,” said Mrs Power.

“Every South Australian has a role to play in ending domestic, family and sexual violence, and it remains a Marshall Liberal Government priority.”

Men’s Referral Service: 1300 766 491 
DV Crisis Line: 1800 800 098