The Andrews Labor Government is doing more for victim-survivors of sexual assault, with funding to provide more counselling sessions and crisis support.
Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos today announced an additional $8.5 million over four years for Sexual Assault Support Services, in response to increased community demand for these services across Victoria.
This funding boost will provide:
- $4.0 million for additional sexual assault support services, which covers short, medium and long term crisis care, counselling, casework, advocacy and group work
- $1.3 million for the Sexual Assault Crisis Line Victoria, a state-wide, after-hours, confidential telephone crisis counselling service for people who have experienced both past and recent sexual assault
- $3.2 million for the Wyndham Multi-Disciplinary Centre, a wraparound support hub providing a range of critical services to vulnerable adults and children who have experienced sexual assault
Investing in these services is expected to help almost 4,000 victim-survivors of sexual assault in Victoria over the next four years, as well as significantly improving the response time for those who require after hours support.
This brings the Labor Government’s support for Victorian sexual assault services to more than $28 million in 2018-19, an increase of $6.8 million or 32 per cent since 2014.
Services funded include: Goulburn Valley Health, Mallee Sexual Assault Unit, Gippsland Centre Against Sexual Assault, Monash Health, Ballarat Health Services and Barwon Centre Against Sexual Assault, as well as the Royal Children’s and Royal Women’s hospitals in metropolitan Melbourne.
Along with other related investments in the Victorian Budget 2018/19, the Labor Government has committed an additional $49.9 million over four years for family violence therapeutic and flexible support across Victoria.
Anyone impacted by sexual assault can access information on specialist support services at services.dhhs.vic.gov.au/sexual-assault-support-services.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos
“Demand for sexual assault support services is increasing, so we’re making sure we can respond to each and every victim-survivor that needs it – we don’t want them braving it alone.”
“We want services that are well resourced to provide assistance, wherever and whenever it’s needed.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Natalie Hutchins
“Our sexual assault services provide a vital service to enable victim-survivors to recover and reclaim their lives – that’s why we’re increasing their funding.”