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Remove barriers to crisis supported accommodation for women and children with disabilities


Who is leading the change

  • Family Safety Victoria

The Department of Health and Human Services review the funding model for crisis supported accommodation to remove barriers for women and children with disabilities.

  • Family Safety Victoria (FSV) is working with key stakeholders to redesign family violence refuge and crisis supported accommodation and address barriers for women and children with disabilities.

    There are a range of initiatives underway focused on improving access to, and support in, family violence refuge and crisis supported accommodation. This includes the redevelopment of refuges, enhanced 24/7 operations and increased resources for children, as well as the Case Management Program Requirements for specialist family violence services that support victim survivors (program requirements) which will set out program requirements for working with adult and children victim survivors including those with disabilities.

    FSV is also working closely with Homes Victoria to respond to broader challenges across the housing and homelessness service system.

    The approach to implementing this recommendation will be coordinated and aligned with these key interdependencies.

  • The 2019-20 State Budget provided $23.9 million over four years and $4.8 million ongoing for Family Violence Refuge and Crisis Case Management Responses, which has enhanced the capacity of the specialist family violence sector to address the needs of clients needing to access crisis response and emergency accommodation services. The 2020-21 Budget provided $18 million over two years ($6 million in 2020-21 and $12 million in 2021-22) for operational funding for refuges and the 2022-23 Budget provided ongoing operational funding for refuges.

    With all core and cluster sites purchased, and development activity progressing, the phasing out of the communal refuge model and the transition to the core and cluster model can be acquitted. Thirteen redeveloped core and cluster refuges are now in operation. All core and cluster facilities are designed to be accessible for victim survivors including children with disabilities, and one unit at each facility will be built to platinum Liveable Design Standards. The 2021-22 state budget also provided funding for a new core and cluster refuge in Wimmera South West, and the 2022-23 state budget provided funding for the construction and operation of a further two core and cluster refuges.

    A state-wide project control group and local user groups with sector representatives have overseen this work and will continue to meet regularly to oversee progress and manage any developing risks or issues.

    Family Safety Victoria has finalised the program requirements which provide a comprehensive guide for specialist family violence services that support victim survivors, including those that deliver crisis supported accommodation services. They articulate expectations for services to enhance the quality and consistency of case practice across the state and include a focus on meeting the needs of women and children with disabilities.

    In 2018-19 funding was provided to Safe Steps, the 24-hour family violence crisis service, for the Disability Family Violence Crisis Response Initiative. This initiative provides additional funding to ensure that family violence victims with a disability receive the additional support they need.

  • Implemented.

Reviewed 27 January 2023

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