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Greens announce plan to keep women and children safe

Media Release
Larissa Waters 12 Sep 2014

The Victorian Greens today announced their election commitment to keep women and children safe with a new Victorian Family Violence Action Plan, matched with $100 million in new annual funding to deliver more prevention programs, more crisis support services and better safety and support within the justice system.

“Family violence is the most pressing justice issue of our time and the Greens will treat it as such with $100 million in new annual investment to keep women and children safe and supported,” said Victorian Greens spokesperson for health and women's affairs, Colleen Hartland MP.

“For too long the deaths of women and children behind closed doors have been ignored. The Greens will provide meaningful investment to tackle the issue.”

"Victoria needs a systematic, whole-of government approach to this issue and matched funding. From prevention programs in schools and workplaces, to safer courts and more legal support for women, there are many facets to the Greens action plan.”

“Support services have been critically underfunded. In my Western Suburbs electorate, Women’s Health West has experienced a 286% increase in demand for family violence, yet received only 25% more funding.”

“Both Liberal and Labor governments have marginalised family violence issues for too long. You can trust the Greens to take action on the big issues."

“Women escaping family violence make up to 40% of people seeking specialist homeless services. Instead of responding to the desperate need for transition housing, the Liberal Government has put it in the too hard basket and has failed to invest in any new affordable housing over the last 4 years of government,” said Ms Hartland.

Senator Larissa Waters, the Australian Greens spokesperson for women, said at the federal level the Greens were standing firm to block the Abbott Government’s cuts to support for victims of family violence.

“The Abbott Government’s budget threatens to trap women in violent relationships, by abolishing the National Rental Affordability Scheme and with cuts to support for single parents and community legal centres.

“The Abbott Government’s GP co-payment would also make it harder for victims of family violence to see a doctor, as many women in controlling relationships do not have control over their own money.

“The Greens have established a Senate Inquiry into domestic violence, which will look at the impact of the Abbott Government’s cuts and I hope will convince Coalition senators to urge Tony Abbott to change course,” Senator Waters said.

The Senate Inquiry is hearing public evidence in Melbourne today.

The Greens Family Violence Action Plan will invest $100 million per year in new funding to:

·        strengthen prevention of family violence

·        increase crisis support and housing services for women and children experiencing family violence

·        make a safe and supportive justice system

·        increase the accountability of men for their violence

·        prioritise addressing family violence within government.

For comment: Colleen Hartland 0417 445 845
For Senator Larissa Waters - Monique Vandeleur 0419 626 725

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