We asked the candidates running in the ACT election what they planned to do to eliminate domestic and family violence.
Here's the response from the Labor Party:
ACT Labor is determined to work with the community to reduce family violence.
If re-elected, the Labor Government’s focus will be on fully implementing our comprehensive family violence package, announced in the 2016-17 ACT Budget, to prevent and more effectively respond to family violence. The $21.42 million funding package includes:
- Establishing a full-time Coordinator-General for Family Safety and a dedicated safer families team to lead the government effort to improve outcomes for victims and their families
- Strengthening integrated case management and coordination of services for victims of family violence
- Supporting improved decision-making in child protection services
- Training for frontline staff right across Community and Emergency Services, Health and Education to better identify and intervene earlier in family violence situations
- Increasing the capacity of specialist drug treatment services to deliver programs that complement family violence services
- Creating a brokerage and bond fund to assist victims seeking to escape family violence with immediate expenses
- Expanding ACT Policing’s role to assist victims in applying for Domestic Violence Orders
Under the package key service providers have also received additional funding to expand their important work in supporting family violence victims. Innovative new service providers, such as the Tara Costigan Foundation, have also received funding.
Labor has a strong track record of prioritising efforts to reduce family violence, and helping family violence victims. This work includes:
- Reform to the victims of crime assistance scheme to make it easier and faster to get financial help and counselling services.
- Creation of a new offence of strangulation, and allowing police interviews of complainants in family violence cases to be used as evidence in criminal trials
- Return to Work Grants which have assisted more than 900 women, approximately half of whom have experienced domestic violence.
- Funding programs in schools to help children and young people engage in respectful relationships.