I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Minister for Women’s Safety and Minister for Families and Social Services, the Hon. Anne Ruston, for visiting my electorate of Bonner and meeting with local groups from across the women’s safety sector recently.
It was a timely visit to address the topic of women’s equality, economic security and health and wellbeing ahead of the federal budget this week. We started our day with a women in business breakfast event at Wynnum Golf Club.
Individuals came from across Bonner to attend, including many of our female small-business owners, local community groups and student leaders from three of our highly regarded Bayside high schools. Over the course of the morning, we heard from the minister on the importance of prioritising women’s safety and equality in our community. It was an overwhelmingly productive and insightful discussion with attendees.
I would like to thank everyone who came along and contributed to the morning.
Our next stop was an important round table discussion with local women’s safety groups that I convened at the Beyond DV centre. Beyond DV provides programs for women and children who have escaped from a domestic violence situation and is a haven to many.
This round table was also timely, as the month of May marks Queensland Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month.
It provided a chance for the minister and I to listen and engage with survivors of domestic violence as well as those working in local front line services.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg reiterated the urgency of domestic violence response and prevention during his budget speech this week, where women’s safety was a key focus.
The Treasurer noted that, sadly, one in four women experience violence from a current or former partner. These numbers are staggering and far too often women are being denied their dignity and personal and economic security. It must stop.
All Australians have the right to be safe, which is why the 2021 budget contains an historic $1 billion for women’s safety measures.
Under the package, the government will provide $164.8 million to establish escaping violence payments to provide women with up to $1,500 in immediate cash, and a further $3½ thousand in kind for goods or services and direct payments of rental bonds, school fees or other items.
I commend this government for putting these measures in place and demonstrating our unwavering commitment to ending violence against women and their children. The Morrison government’s plan to not only reduce but eliminate domestic violence is ambitious and is exactly what our country needs.
Thank you, for visiting our electorate and listening to the needs of our community. I’d also like to extend my sincere appreciation to Carolyn Robinson from Beyond DV and the brave domestic violence survivors who shared their stories with us.
The time for change is now.