Slow drip of domestic violence funding ‘not good enough’

Domestic Violence Victoria chief executive Alison McDonald said that, while the state’s sector was better funded than that in NSW thanks to reforms that emerged from the royal commission into violence against women, service providers were worried about the impact of Melbourne’s latest stage-three lockdown.

“Family violence thrives in isolation and at the moment everybody’s isolated,” she said.

“Men who use violence are weaponising the pandemic to further perpetuate power and control … It gives them an excuse to enforce that control.”

Being trapped at home with a violent or controlling family member made it tricky for people experiencing domestic violence to reach out over the phone, she said. The Victorian sector expected another spike when Melbourne came out of lockdown again.

Ms McDonald said the delaying of Victoria’s state’s budget until later this year had left the sector uncertain about whether it would have “sustainable, long term funding”.

“Normally, by midyear, we’d know what programs will continue to be funded,” she said.

Sydney Morning Herald