IT’S TIME TO SAY NO TO FAMILY VIOLENCE

Family violence victims in Narre Warren South will be at the heart of the Andrews Labor Government’s implementation of the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Family Violence.

Member for Narre Warren South Judith Couacaud Graley MP welcomed the report and vowed to continue to be a strong advocate for victims, survivors and their families.

Ms Graley established the Say NO to Family Violence awareness campaign last year following the disturbing revelation that the City of Casey had the highest number of reported incidents of family violence in Victoria.

Ms Graley also made a submission to the Royal Commission into Family Violence to ensure the concerns of local victims and support agencies were heard.

The Government will work with victims and survivors, and with the people and organisations that help them, to build a better system that will help prevent family violence, keep people safe and hold perpetrators accountable.

The Royal Commission’s report can be accessed at http://www.rcfv.com.au/.

Comments attributable to Member for Narre Warren South Judith Couacaud Graley MP

“It is local families, it is our community that has suffered for too long from these terrible acts of violence and I wholeheartedly welcome this report and its recommendations,”

“I have heard firsthand from victims and our support agencies about the difficulties many women and their families face when attempting to secure the assistance they need to be safe,”

“An immediate boost in funding for support services and the establishment of Support and Safety Hubs will make a very real difference for those who are in desperate need of help,”

“With my strong interest in education I am strongly in favour of attempting to prevent family violence right across generations by rolling out innovative respectful relationships education in our school,”

“We needed to raise awareness and we have done that, now we need to take action and I am just so heartened by the commitment of our Premier, the Minister and our Government to fixing our broken family violence system.

Comments attributable to the Executive Officer of Casey North CISS Susan Magee
“Casey North CISS assists many clients presenting as a result of Family Violence for a variety of reasons, including financial hardship, advocacy and referral, financial counselling and generalist counselling.”
“It is very encouraging to see such a comprehensive response by the Royal Commission into Family Violence, in particular;
• The immediate funding boost for support programs has been long overdue and welcomed, particularly in Casey with the highest numbers of Family Violence incidents recorded
• The focus on a need to implement primary prevention strategies and encourage respectful relationships is applauded and it is hoped that there will be funding opportunities available to provide programs in the community for both women and men.
• The recognition of the connection between family violence and financial abuse and disadvantage and recommendations to address these issues are also welcomed.”

Key Recommendations

1. A call for investment in future generations through expanded respectful relationships education in schools (RREiS). This recommendation goes beyond the inclusion of RREiS in the State curriculum and recommends whole of school programs.
2. Establishment of Support and Safety Hubs in 17 local communities throughout Victoria, to make it easier for victims to find help and gain access to a greater range of services. These hubs may be co-located with other services important to victims and children.
3. New laws to ensure that privacy considerations do not trump victims’ safety—with a multi-agency Central Information Point managing risk of perpetration across the State. This is a high tech response to high risk cases, giving government and police access to information to properly identify risk.
4. An immediate funding boost to services that support victims and families, additional resources for Aboriginal community initiatives and a dedicated funding stream for preventing family violence;
5. A ‘blitz’ to rehouse women and children forced to leave their homes, supported by expanded individual funding packages;
6. Expanded mobile technology for front-line police, including a trial of body-worn cameras;
7. More specialist family violence courts that can deal with criminal, civil and family law matters at the same time;
8. Stronger perpetrator programs and increased monitoring and oversight by agencies;
9. Family violence training for all key workforces—including in hospitals and schools; and
10. An independent Family Violence Agency to hold government to account.