More than 100 extra homes for women and children escaping family violence will be built across Victoria as part of a $133.2 million State Government package.
The plan also includes money to redevelop existing refuges, and the construction of two new Aboriginal crisis accommodation centres.
Housing and Mental Health Minister Martin Foley said women in danger would also be able to immediately access housing in the private rental market, if refuge places were not available.
He said the funding was in response to recommendations made by the Royal Commission into Family Violence.
“It’s about making sure women and children are safe and have the support that they need,” he said.
“We will be re-building … our network of family violence refuges.
“That is about making sure that we … provide that immediate roof over a family’s head when they’re in crisis to protect them from violence, then give them the pathway to recover into permanent housing, into support, and into a better future.”
Mr Foley also said $17 million would be spent on specialist family violence advisers to be embedded in local alcohol and drug services across the state.
“So many people get caught up in a downward spiral of alcohol and drug addiction, mental health challenges that can lead to family violence,” he said.
“This is about responding before families get into crisis.
“The family violence royal commission said that far too regularly our services have been split in silos and isolated from each other.”
Mr Foley said there were over 35,000 people on Victoria’s public housing waiting list. Nearly 10,000 require priority housing, and of that group up to 8,000 are dealing with some form of relationship or family violence.
This article was originally published by ABC.net.au.