More support for victims of domestic violence

By Staff reporter

Western Bay victims of domestic violence will be given more support from Government agencies thanks to a $2 million boost in funding, Justice Minister Judith Collins announced today.

The money will fund the extension of the Victims Centre project, which was created in 2011 to help victims access the resources and support services they need from Government agencies.

The Centre will get $1 million each year until June 2014.

Ms Collins said the justice system hasn't always been as straightforward and supportive as it could be for victims of crime.

She was concerned that victims received information that was often unclear and duplicated across agencies, and they were not getting the support they needed.

Over the past year, more than 17,700 calls were made to the victims information freephone line _ an average of 1478 per month.

A further 20,260 people have accessed support via the Victims Information website.

Ms Collins said the Government was committed to putting victims at the heart of our justice system.

The announcement comes two weeks after Ms Collins committed $1 million to the expansion of the safe@home domestic violence prevention programme.

On August 31, she committed $1 million over the next two years to the project delivered by Auckland charity, Shine.

Ms Collins said at least 900 extra homes would be strengthened with enhanced security and provide support to women and children at risk of repeat victimisation.

The increased funding will enable Shine to expand the programme into Tauranga, Christchurch and South Auckland.

"Safe@home helps keep vulnerable women and children safe from domestic abuse without them having to leave their own homes.  Families can stay where their established support networks such as neighbours and school friends are,'' she said.

"Safe@home provides safety tools like monitored personal alarms, escape plans and reinforced doors, and is in addition to a protection order imposed by a judge.''

"We are committed to protecting victims and preventing repeat victimisation. By making homes safer and more secure we are giving these families tools to help keep them safe from continued abuse, Ms Collins said.


- Bay of Plenty Times

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