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Tuesday, 19 February 2019
Page: 13988


Mr FLETCHER (BradfieldMinister for Families and Social Services) (16:28): I rise to recognise the work of the Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Women's Shelter and President Sallianne McClelland in providing assistance to victims and survivors of domestic violence in my electorate of Bradfield and surrounding areas. In the last year alone, there were 263 reported domestic violence assaults in the Hornsby and Ku-ring-gai council areas. The Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Women's Shelter aims to provide temporary supported accommodation for women in times of crisis such as homelessness or domestic violence. Women can stay at the shelter for up to three months and are allocated specialist caseworkers who support them to access necessary legal, health, employment and financial services. Women who cannot be housed can access an outreach program. Since opening in February 2015, more than 282 women have been safely housed at the shelter. Seventy-two per cent needed help due to domestic violence. Ninety-seven per cent had a tailored case plan within 72 hours of arriving at the shelter.

I also acknowledge the work that Sallianne McClelland is presently doing as part of an Apron Project roadshow initiative. She is driving throughout New South Wales with the aim of educating and raising awareness of domestic violence in towns across New South Wales, while raising much-needed funds for women's services at each stop, with an Apron showcase, community art projects and the sharing of stories.

Can I also acknowledge the chief executive of Women's Community Shelters, Annabelle Daniel. Women's Community Shelters is the umbrella organisation behind the Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Women's Shelter. It's also the umbrella organisation behind the Northern Beaches Women's Shelter, and I'd like to acknowledge the president of that organisation, Rosy Sullivan. I joined with her and the member for Warringah and Margie Abbott in Manly last Saturday to announce new funding for trials of technology that can help protect women against the risks of domestic violence. We were also able to speak of the $60 million grant program, announced by the Prime Minister last Monday, for eligible organisations to provide new or expanded emergency accommodation facilities for those escaping domestic and family violence. I certainly hope and expect that both the Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Women's Shelter and the Northern Beaches Women's Shelter will be among the many organisations around the country bringing forward grant applications under that $60 million program, which of course was also accompanied by an announcement of $18 million to extend the existing Keeping Women Safe in their Homes program.

The Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Women's Shelter and the Northern Beaches Women's Shelter are wonderful examples of communities coming together to develop facilities which provide support to women at a time of great need. I congratulate all involved with these great organisations and I look forward to the $60 million program announced last Monday allowing many more such organisations to deliver these services.