All the latest news and views from the CPSU team

Family Violence action

The Safe Homes, Families Communities action plan hasn’t put a single cent towards government run specialist support services.

The plan highlights the need for additional children and adult support services and a need for better integration of services but there’s no recognition of or funding for the Family Violence Counselling & Support Service.

These professionals are the front line when it comes to supporting victims of family violence.

It comes as Allied Health Professionals from the Northern Family Violence Counselling and Support Services stopped work for an hour last week. They took action because of chronic underfunding and staffing of their service. 

For the last three years Allied Health Professionals in the Northern Family Violence Support Service have continually raised their concerns about chronic underfunding and understaffing of this important service.

The numbers:
• The FVCSS receives 6,500 new referrals a year.
• There are 2.76 FTE staff in the North to deal with about 2,000 referrals for adult victims
• This means about 646 referrals for every worker, or 38 new cases a week, which does not include existing clients.

The consequences of this underfunding and understaffing are:
• Counselling is often done on the phone, rather than face-to-face;
• The service is increasingly unable to offer the medium to long term counselling it used to;
• It reduces access for Tasmanians in remote and regional areas; and
• There’s less time to support Tasmanians to access services like housing or Centrelink, which are critical to leaving violent relationships.

“The Safe Homes, Families Communities action plan calls for additional counselling support services, but the Hodgman government has chosen not to put a single cent to the Family Violence Counselling and Support Service, despite these workers raising these issues for years.

“These professionals are the frontline when it comes to supporting Tasmanian adults and children who are victims of family violence.  Leaving a violent partner is difficult and often takes numerous attempts. It is vital that when an individual makes the decision to reach out for help that services, such as the Family Violence Counselling and Support Service are staffed to do all that they can to support them.  The work of these professionals gives the victims of family violence support to get on with their lives and allows them to receive the help they need, but there are simply not enough of them.”

CPSU Assistant Secretary Thirza White

READ:  The Examiner article here and Thirza White’s Examiner opinion piece here
LISTEN: Click here. Thirza White speaks with Rick Fontyn from Tasmania Talks. 

Because of us: words of Family Violence Counselling & Support Service
• Our community is safer.
• Victims are not alone.
• All family violence victims are offered support.
• The impact of family violence is seen, heard and matters.

No Comments