Attorney-General Senator Brandis has announced that $15m of Turnbull’s $100m pledge to tackling family and domestic violence, will be used to establish specialist domestic violence units within legal assistance services located in domestic violence hot-spots.
While the National Association of Community Legal Centres welcomes the cash injection, the association is still calling for the additional $200m per year in funding that the Productivity Commission identified last year.
“We are extremely concerned at the absence from the broader $100m package for increased funding for Indigenous Family Violence Legal Services to expand their holistic legal and support services to Indigenous woman in rural and regional Australia,” said NACLC board member Rosslyn Monro.
Brandis announced that 12 new domestic violence and five health justice partnerships would be established.
“We are unclear however how the Government will determine which legal assistance services will receive this funding, or how it impacts on the recently settled National Partnership Agreement for Legal Assistance Services,” Monro said.
“This funding means that fewer women and children will need to be turned away from legal services areas serviced by these new units, but what about the women and children living in other regions?”
The NACLC said that it encouraging to see Turnbull take action against family violence so soon into office.
“It is fantastic to see that in his first days in office, the Prime Minister has chosen to take action against family and domestic violence,” she said.
“He and his government have listened to the voices of domestic violence advocates such as Rosie Batty, who have repeatedly called for adequate funding for Community Legal Centres in their work keeping women and children safe from domestic violence.”