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Tuesday, 7 February 2017
Page: 186

Third Action Plan for the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children

(Question No. 543)

Ms Butler asked the Minister representing the Attorney-General, in writing, on 9 November 2016:

In respect of the Government's announcement on 28 October that it would commit $18.5 million, for the period of the Third Action Plan for the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children, for integrated duty lawyer and social support services in family courts, (a) will each registry serving the Family Court and/or Federal Circuit Court be provided with such services, (b) who will (i) employ, and (ii) provide administrative support, the people providing such services, (c) how will the Government be assured of the quality of such services, and (d) what qualifications and experience will be required of the persons providing social support services.

Mr Keenan: - The Attorney-General has provided the following answer to the honourable member's question:

(a) The Government is currently negotiating arrangements for these services with the states and territories, including service locations.

(b) The services will be managed by the legal aid commission in each jurisdiction.

(c) Appropriate accountability and reporting measures will be built into the funding arrangement negotiated with states and territories. The Attorney-General's Department will also evaluate the services.

(d) Legal aid commissions will be requested and encouraged to partner with existing family violence support services to deliver the integrated, court-based services. The qualifications and experience of staff will be a matter for legal aid commissions to consider in managing the new services.