The Albanese Government is delivering on its commitment to ending violence in one generation with the commencement of the first place-based trial of the Escaping Violence Payment in Cairns, Queensland.
The place-based trial will commence delivering services in the Cairns region from Monday 27 February 2023. It will align with the current national trial of the Escaping Violence Payment and will provide financial support to First Nations victim survivors of intimate partner violence to establish a life free from violence.
Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth emphasised the importance of policy responses to escaping violence for First Nations victim-survivors being led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“The Government is wholeheartedly committed to the safety of women and their children, and it is an absolute priority that they are supported in escaping from, and eliminating, violence and abuse in their lives,” Minister Rishworth said.
“We are proud to be working in partnership with the local First Nations-led organisation, Remote Area Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Care (RAATSICC), to ensure the support provided is culturally appropriate, trauma informed and centred on the needs of the local community.
RAATSICC will deliver the place-based trial, providing victim-survivors in the Cairns region, including the Torres Strait and Cape York, with improved access to services and supports needed to leave family and domestic violence situations.
“RAATSICC is thrilled to be granted this opportunity to deliver the Escaping Violence Payment trial in the Cairns region,” Larissa Walker, RAATSICC Manger said.
“We look forward to working with our community partners and the Department of Social Services to provide culturally safe and timely access to the EVP for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people leaving intimate partner violence.”
The Escaping Violence Payment provides up to $5000 in support (up to $1500 in cash, with the remaining up to $3500 in goods or services) to eligible individuals leaving a violent intimate partner relationship with the aim of reducing the barrier of financial insecurity and establishing a home free from violence.
The success of this place-based trial will inform the development of activities that further support victim survivors of family, domestic and sexual violence in First Nations communities.
“Place-based initiatives target community specific issues and engage local people with local knowledge to develop local solutions.
“We recognise that violence against Aboriginal women is not an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander problem and it should not be left to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to sort it out.
“By working in partnership with communities we aim to reach our shared goal of a 50 per cent reduction in all forms of family violence and abuse against First Nations women and children by 2031,” Minister Rishworth said.
Cairns based Senator Nita Green said that this trial would play a fundamental role in achieving the Government’s ambitious goal.
“No one should live in fear of abuse from a partner, and I am so proud to be part of a Government that is committed to ending violence in a generation.
“This trial will go a long way in working towards that goal, and I am pleased to know a First Nations-led organisation right here in our community will be working in partnership with our Government on this.”
The National Escaping Violence Payment trial is being delivered by the UnitingCare Network and has been operational since October 2021. More information can be found at Escaping Violence Payment.
An independent evaluator will assess the national and place-based Escaping Violence Payment during the life of the trials to inform current and future policy development.
If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au
More information on the Escaping Violence Payment place-based trial can be found on the RAATSICCwebsite.