Media Release by The Hon Tanya Pibersek MP

Domestic violence and homelessness report released at Chisholm Care units launch

Tanya Plibersek and Member for Werriwa, Chris Hayes today launched the Baptist Community Services Chisholm Care units in Campbelltown, in Sydney’s south-west.

The units provide crisis and medium term accommodation for women escaping domestic violence.

BCS Chisholm Care also offers a range of other support services including counselling, referrals, advocacy and educational, financial and parenting assistance.

Ms Plibersek said: “These units will not only provide a safe haven for women and children escaping a violent or unsafe situation; but also the support, counselling and advocacy needed.

“Domestic and family domestic violence is the single greatest reason people seek help from homelessness services.”

Mr Hayes said: “Addressing violence against women and homelessness requires a commitment from Federal, State, Territory and local governments to a long-term integrated approach.”

The Government also today released research on the intersection between domestic violence and homelessness titled: Women, Domestic and Family Violence and Homelessness: A Synthesis Report.

This new research confirms there is no one pathway into homelessness for women affected by domestic and family violence and hence no one solution.

The report says that a range of prevention and intervention initiatives are needed as part of an integrated approach to addressing violence against women and homelessness.

This research cites successful strategies that have been used in combination with safe, secure and affordable housing to prevent domestic violence related homelessness.

A substantial part of the solution is community education campaigns that work to prevent violence before it happens.

Another strategy which has had successful results is the Safe at Home model.

Safe at Home programs allow women and kids to stay safely at home while the perpetrator is removed.

The findings from the report will be considered in the context of the development of the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children and the Homelessness White Paper.