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Refuges / housing

Responsible government

  • Victoria

Fourth Action Plan actions

  • Improve support and service system responses
    • 20 Improve access to suitable and safe accommodation within their communities for women who have experienced domestic, family and sexual violence.

What are we doing?

The Victorian Government has begun phasing out communal refuges and moving towards a ‘core and cluster’ model including building two new Aboriginal family violence refuges. This will ensure that refuge accommodation promotes safety, is accessible to people with disabilities, provides private units and enables connections with the community. As refuges are redeveloped, capacity for after-hours support will be provided.

Available emergency accommodation and support services include crisis accommodation, such as refuges, including individual properties or units, as well as communal refuges (which are being redeveloped to the preferred core and cluster model). Many victim survivors in crisis receive support services, such as case management, and, when refuges are unavailable, access to ad hoc accommodation, such as motels, rooming houses and caravans.

  • The Victorian Government will provide $23.9 million between 2018–19 and 2019–20 for crisis accommodation, which includes implementation of Family Violence Refuge and Crisis Case Management Responses, supporting a move towards the ‘core and cluster’ model of housing.

What have we achieved so far?

  • Investment of $5.5 million to build 20 affordable units for women and children fleeing family violence
  • Investment of $83.2 million for redevelopment of family violence refuges to ‘core and cluster’ models and construction of two new Aboriginal refuges
  • Investment of $1 billion Social Housing Growth Fund to support up to 2,200 new social housing places
  • Purchase and head-lease of 120 additional properties as part of the Safe and Stable Homes project to provide additional housing for victim survivors
  • Construction of new long-term public housing properties commenced
  • Funding for further refuge services to provide secure, after-hours crisis accommodation.

What is next?

  • The refuge redevelopment program consisting of 17 new core and cluster refuges as well as for the establishment of two new Aboriginal family violence refuges, is scheduled to be completed by 2021.
  • The first four refuges are scheduled to be complete by late 2019.

What difference will we make?

This initiative will contribute to the National Outcomes that Indigenous communities are strengthened and that services meet the needs of women and their children experiencing violence.

The Victorian Family Violence Outcomes Framework was published in Ending Family Violence: Victoria’s Plan for Change, which outlined Victoria’s priorities in preventing and responding to family violence, why they matter, and what constitutes success. The Victorian Family Violence Outcomes Framework is a whole of Government framework and is intended to ensure Victorian family violence reform efforts are focused on the actions that make a difference. The Victorian Government is progressing development of the framework, including through indicators and measures. In time, measurement and monitoring of Victorian family violence outcomes may also support reporting for the National Plan.

Victoria will monitor this initiative by reporting on the establishment of the core and cluster refuges and measuring the number of households that can be accommodated in refuge, the number of family violence victims who receive a refuge response, and the number of nights of refuge accommodation provided to victims of family violence.

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