About 700 new safe places for women and children escaping domestic violence will be built across the country under the Morrison Government’s $60 million Safe Places initiative for new and expanded emergency accommodation.
Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston and Assistant Minister for Community Housing, Homelessness and Community Services Luke Howarth announced 40 projects would be funded, supporting about 6000 women and children each year.
Projects include building new two and three bedroom homes, transforming office buildings into self-contained apartments and establishing small group homes.
Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston said this was an important investment to improve access to suitable accommodation for women and their children.
“The first priority of the Morrison Government is to keep Australians safe and secure but, sadly, we know that home is not safe for many women and children,” Minister Ruston said.
“When women make the decision to leave it is vital that they have somewhere safe to go. This increase in emergency accommodation will support thousands of women and children as they rebuild their lives free of violence.”
Assistant Minister for Community Housing, Homelessness and Community Services Luke Howarth said, tragically, family and domestic violence was a leading cause of homelessness for women and children.
“These new places will not only ensure women and children have somewhere safe to sleep but will also provide access to specialist family and domestic violence services to help create real and lasting change in their lives,” Assistant Minister Howarth said.
“Importantly about half of these places will be remote and regional communities supporting those who have had limited safe housing options.
“The Government also favoured projects which provide longer term, self-contained emergency accommodation which will give women and their children increased stability.”
The $60 million Safe Places Emergency Accommodation program is part of the $78 million funding package which includes $18 million to continue the Keeping Women Safe in their Homes initiative.
This funding forms part of the $340 million Australian Government investment in the Fourth Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010–2022 which is provided in addition to our $150 million COVID-19 response package.
For more information on the Safe Places Emergency Accommodation grants, visit the Community Grants Hub.