More women encouraged to seek support for domestic violence

Published Wednesday, 09 November, 2016 at 04:03 PM

Minister for Communities, Women and Youth, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

Queensland women continue to seek domestic and family violence support, with a spike of 596 calls for help to DV Connect on Monday.

Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Shannon Fentiman encouraged women to come forward and ask for help ahead of the busy Christmas period, when demand for crisis support traditionally increases.

“It is vital that Queensland women fleeing domestic and family violence or seeking support and advice know who they can turn to in their time of crisis,” Ms Fentiman said.

“DV Connect provide a helping hand so that women and children fleeing violence can turn to them for help to access support services, including emergency accommodation.

“We know the most dangerous time for a woman fleeing violence is when she makes the difficult decision to leave that relationship. That’s why the safety of women is always paramount.

“DV Connect will always assess the safety of a potential placement and best suitable accommodation for a woman escaping violence, taking into account her individual circumstances.

“It is simply irresponsible for the Member for Mudgeeraba Ros Bates to play politics with women’s lives.

“By spreading false rumours about so-called “directives” to DV Connect about what shelters they can refer women to, she runs the serious risk of discouraging women from coming forward to seek help.”

DV Connect CEO Di Mangan said there was no directive issued to stop referring women to private shelters in Queensland, but that safety was always the priority.

“With the warmer weather, we traditionally see growing numbers seeking help from DV Connect and we expect more to continue to come forward,” Ms Mangan said.

“Support is there and we are doing everything in our power to get them the help they need.

“Any private arrangement would be better than a motel, but we had to be sure we were referring women to a place we were sure would be safe for them.”

Ms Fentiman said the Palaszczuk Government opened two new domestic violence shelters in Brisbane and Townsville last year and announced a further two at Roma and Charters Towers.

It announced a record almost $200 million investment in domestic violence services to keep Queenslanders safe and drive cultural change in the 2016-17 State Budget.

Media contacts:

Minister’s office - 0400 200 641 or 0400 774 303

DV Connect CEO Di Mangan – 0411 844 141