The Coalition Government has today announced a further $25 million investment in a range of measures to reduce the violence experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and children.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, said violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and children had a devastating impact on communities and families.
“Indigenous women are 34 times more likely to be hospitalised because of family violence than non-Indigenous women. Indigenous children are more than five times more likely than non-Indigenous children to be hospitalised for assault and eight times more likely to experience child abuse or neglect,” Minister Scullion said.
“To address these shocking statistics, the issue of violence in Indigenous communities has been highlighted as a national priority under the Third Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022.
“The $25 million package of additional measures will help frontline services to intervene early to prevent violence from occurring, while also addressing the drivers of violence in Indigenous communities.”
The package includes:
- trauma-informed therapeutic services for Indigenous children affected by family violence to break the cycle of intergenerational violence;
- services for perpetrators to encourage behaviour change and prevent future offending;
- intensive family-focused case management to address behaviours that lead to family violence; and
- increasing the capacity of family violence prevention legal services to deliver holistic, case-managed crisis support to Indigenous women and children experiencing family violence.
“The Government has actively sought the views of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people on how best to address family violence to inform the development of the Third Action Plan,” Minister Scullion said.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and communities will be engaged to collaborate on these new initiatives. We will also be encouraging Indigenous community organisations to deliver services under the Third Action Plan as they are best placed to help those in need.”
Minister Scullion said that in addition to this, the Coalition Government had allocated more than $92.7 million over four years through to 30 June 2018 to ensure Indigenous Family Violence Prevention Legal Service (FVPLS) providers continued their important work.
“Under the Coalition, despite what Labor says, no Indigenous FVPLS has had funding cut under the Indigenous Advancement Strategy – and overall funding has in fact increased,” Minister Scullion said.
“Funding to 13 of the 14 FVPLS providers has been maintained through the IAS funding round – and the remaining provider has received additional funding to expand its services to another nine communities in the Top End.
“Today, I can announce that more than $9 million will be provided to nine of the FVPLS providers to deliver them certainty through to June 2018 so they can continue their critical work in supporting Indigenous victims of family violence.
“The remaining five FVPLS providers already had their funding confirmed – meaning all of the FVPLS providers now have the certainty to continue delivering their vital services.”
The Third Action Plan builds on existing work underway through the Women’s Safety Package which provided over $100 million for a range of activities to keep all women safe from violence, including $21 million for activities specifically targeting Indigenous families.