Posted on 30. Aug, 2011 in News

The Baillieu Government needs to stop dithering and come up with a plan to tackle an alarming rise in family violence reports revealed in the latest Victoria Police crime statistics, the Shadow Minister for Crime Prevention, Jill Hennessy, said today.

The statistics show family violence accounted for 30 per cent of all assaults in Victoria and a 14.6 percent increase in reports of family violence.

Ms Hennessy said the Baillieu Government had no plan to tackle family violence and had allocated no new money for specific family violence programs in the State Budget.

“Violence against women and children in the home can and must stop,” Ms Hennessy said.

“The Baillieu Government talks tough on crime prevention, yet the Minister for Crime Prevention, Andrew McIntosh, recently said family violence was the responsibility of the Minister for Women’s Affairs – not him.

“Clearly, Mr McIntosh is happy to handball the issue to a junior minister and does not believe family violence is a top priority for him or the Baillieu Government.

“But this is not surprising given this year’s Budget failed to allocate a single new dollar for specific domestic violence programs – and there was no mention of a plan to tackle family violence in Mr Baiilieu’s Families Statement.”

In contrast, Ms Hennessy said Labor in Government had invested $175 million in family violence reform that had supported an increase in the number of women reporting family violence to police.

“Thanks to our investment in community education programs, women are now more likely to report family violence crimes to police,” she said.

“But anecdotal evidence of an increase in the incidence of family violence due to uncertain economic times is disturbing.

“This comes at a time when the Baillieu Government is refusing to support proven anti-family violence programs.

“Mr McIntosh will not fund the roll out of the Bsafe program through regional and rural Victoria – despite Mr McIntosh personally presenting the program with a crime prevention award.

“It just proves that when vulnerable women and children need help the most, the Baillieu Government is all talk and no action.”

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