South Australian children exposed to family violence and women seeking a safe home after leaving an abusive partner will receive extra specialist support under a suite of new Marshall Liberal Government initiatives to be rolled out from July.
The State Government will now work closely with domestic and family experts to develop and deliver the three new services, thanks to a $9.8 million Federal Government funding injection to help at-risk South Australians during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is expected that the new initiatives will support up to 350 families.
The three, new Marshall Liberal Government measures include:
- $1.5 million for Safe and Well Kids
This new program will see a team of experts work together to provide “wrap around” support to children and adolescents who have experienced domestic and family violence. The team of experts may include child-focused case managers, Aboriginal family workers, social workers and a children’s legal advocate.
- $500,000 for an Aboriginal children’s therapeutic service
This funding will enable an Aboriginal-led organisation to develop and trial a traumaresponsive therapeutic model designed specifically for Aboriginal children and adolescents – it will be a best-practice way of supporting Aboriginal children and young people to heal from the trauma of family violence.
- $1.7 million for Safe and Secure Housing
This new program will provide support, information and advocacy to help women and their children move out of temporary crisis accommodation and into safe, long-term accommodation.
Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the Marshall Liberal Government remains steadfast in its commitment to support at-risk women and children in SA.
“It’s clear that domestic, family and sexual violence is still prevalent in our homes and in our communities and as a Government, we are determined to tackle this insidious scourge,” said Minister Lensink.
“Most frontline domestic violence services are understandably focussed on the needs of our at-risk women, however children and adolescents exposed to violence and abuse in the family home need our support too – and that’s why we’re are targeting new funding to help them.”
Minister Lensink said ensuring at-risk women and children have safe, secure and stable housing was key.
“When women need to flee their homes immediately, sometimes a motel is the only available accommodation option and tailored support to enable women to transition out of motels and into long-term accommodation is a priority,” said Minister Lensink.
“Women need and deserve the security of a long-term home to move on with their lives and our new Safe and Secure Housing program will provide the intensive support needed to help women find a home that is safe and meets their needs.”
Assistant Minister for Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Carolyn Power welcomed the funding injection. “We know that Aboriginal families experience disproportionate rates of violence.
We’ve heard first-hand how important it is to have community involvement and the right approach culturally in order to effectively address family violence,” said Mrs Power.
“Breaking the cycle of violence against women and their children, and providing suitable support, may look different for different population groups, so it is vital that we are providing tailored responses.
“Our collective hearts break when we learn of children being impacted by family violence and it is a priority that we take action.”
The Marshall Liberal Government previously announced additional DV initiatives, fast-tracked by Federal Government funding, which are now operational.
New initiatives include state-first funding for the 24/7 Men’s Referral Service, the successful Break the Cycle DV advertising campaign and financial support for women fleeing violent homes.
In addition to this funding, the Marshall Liberal Government is delivering a record $21 million towards a suite of new DV measures.