Women and children escaping family violence will have greater access to a range of housing options with an initial investment in a housing blitz announced today.
Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley announced the funding in response to the Royal Commission into Family Violence recommendations that called for the Government to immediately increase crisis and emergency accommodation options, to help victims to remain at home and to redevelop family violence refuges.
The Royal Commission highlighted problems around the lack of appropriate accommodation for victims of family violence, with many being turned away from accommodation. This funding is the first step in responding to the specific housing recommendations of the Royal Commission.
The $152 million package includes:
- $25 million over two years for accommodation for the homeless – this fund will support construction of 180 new units of crisis accommodation and upgrades of existing accommodation
- $21 million over two years to begin redeveloping existing refuges to the new core and cluster model and to provide 24 hour staffing at up to six refuges
- $50 million – rapid housing assistance – provision of 130 new social housing properties as a first stage and headleasing for up to 100 dwellings.
- $16 million in 2016-17 to provide private rental assistance that supports access to private rental
- $40 million over two years to provide flexible tailored responses that meet the individual needs of victims of family violence, including support to stay safe at home.
A Family Violence Housing Assistance Implementation Taskforce will be established, as recommended by the Royal Commission, to provide advice to government on Housing solutions for victims of family violence.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley
“We know that Family violence is the main reason for women seeking assistance from homelessness support services in Victoria.”
“The Royal Commission identified the need to change a broken system that allows women and children to be forced from their homes – or worse, feel compelled to stay in a violent home because there is no other option available to them.”
“These increased services will deliver greater support in both bricks and mortar and individualised assistance – an important first step in addressing the housing needs of families who are impacted.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Fiona Richardson
“The lack of safe and affordable housing has rightly been identified as a key challenge of our broken system.”