Improving Family Violence Support For Koori Communities

The Andrews Labor Government is providing more culturally appropriate services across the state’s justice system to help Aboriginal Victorians facing family violence.

Attorney-General Martin Pakula attended the Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention and Legal Service in Abbotsford today as part of NAIDOC Week and discussed the initiatives.

As part of the Victorian Budget 2017/18, the Labor Government is delivering $32.1 million to expand existing programs and provide new services – most of which will be delivered by Aboriginal organisations.

The Budget provides more than $1.1 million for a Koori women’s gathering place – announced today as the Djirra Women’s Place – which will be an integrated case management service for Aboriginal women.

Djirra Women’s Place will aim to break the cycle of family violence and make it easier for survivors to access a greater range of services safely and more quickly.

The Budget also delivers almost $11.4 million for more prevention, early intervention and diversion programs for Aboriginal communities. These measures include:

  • prevention and early intervention programs
  • the continuation and expansion of the Koori Women’s Diversion Program
  • the continuation of Aboriginal specific services offered by the Dispute Settlement Centre of Victoria.

Another $11 million will help fund the Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention and Legal Service and the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service to provide culturally appropriate family violence legal services to Koori communities.

A further $5.6 million is being provided to employ additional Aboriginal support workers within the Victims Assistance Program. This funding will help to ensure that survivors are provided with culturally safe and accessible victim support and improved access to justice.

The Labor Government is also providing $3 million to address Aboriginal male offending, with an intensive residential diversion program for perpetrators of family violence. This program will provide behaviour change programs with a focus on parenting, life skills and post-release support.

Quotes attributable to Attorney-General Martin Pakula

“We want to make sure that we’re providing more culturally appropriate support services to tackle family violence.”

“These targeted initiatives are designed to address the specific impact family violence has on Koori communities and help to end the cycle of abuse.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Natalie Hutchins

“The effects of family violence are far reaching and I’m pleased we’re promoting cultural support and recognising the Aboriginal community with these initiatives.”