Vulnerable Darwin families, including those experiencing violence, will now have access to new and enhanced services to help them through family relationship breakdowns as part of an additional $9.87 million investment from the Coalition Government.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, said Darwin was one of eight locations across the country to be part of a new $6.2 million family-dispute resolution service.
“Family-dispute resolution helps couples affected by separation agree on arrangements for their children without going to court. This new initiative will offer specially tailored services that complement mediation with legal and culturally-appropriate support,” Senator Scullion said.
“Building on the Coalition Government’s commitment to help those who need it most, this pilot programme will see Family Relationship Centres partner with specialists – for instance interpreters and legal, migrant and Indigenous-specific service providers – to deliver targeted support to families from Indigenous and culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
“The new pilot service, part of the Government’s $100 million commitment under the Third Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022, will be delivered in Darwin through Relationships Australia (Northern Territory).”
The Coalition Government is also providing $3.67 million in additional funding over the next two years to the 65 government-funded Children’s Contact Services across Australia, bringing their total Commonwealth funding to more than $17 million each year.
“Catholic Care NT will receive an additional $121,000 for services in the NT, with Children’s Contact Services in Darwin and Alice Springs,” Senator Scullion said.
“Children’s Contact Services help keep families safe. They provide supervised, safe and neutral contact and changeover locations, helping children in vulnerable families to maintain relationships with both parents. This additional funding will make this service available to more Territory families and reduce waiting times.”
The Coalition Government is committing record funding to the legal assistance sector, providing more than $1.77 billion to legal aid commissions, community legal centres and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services over five years to 2020.