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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 12 April 2018) . . Page.. 1330 ..


program, the completion of the domestic and family violence deaths in the ACT review report, the provision of domestic violence support services by the Domestic Violence Crisis Service, the use of women’s safety assessments for ACT government events, and the ACT public service introduction of a special domestic violence leave provision in the EBA.

The work under the second implementation plan saw further progress under the four objectives of the strategy. This work includes the continuation of the family safety grants program, which supports projects that help women and children stay safe. Organisations can apply for funding of up to $15,000 to support their projects. There is the implementation of respectful relations education in the ACT curriculum. Canberra public schools are implementing social emotional learning programs to help students to develop the knowledge, attitude and skills to manage their emotions, relationships and decisions.

There was the publication of the ACT public service family violence toolkit in August 2016. The toolkit provides guidance materials for employees, delegates and human resource practitioners to support employees who are experiencing domestic and family violence. There is the ongoing development of a skilled and educated workforce who are equipped to respond to the needs of adults and children experiencing family violence. Additional training will be rolled out in 2018, prioritising high volume, first contact areas, including the health, education, community services and justice sectors.

There was the completion of the co-design of the family safety hub. This 12-month process was undertaken by the office of the Coordinator-General for Family Safety, which engaged over 50 staff working in front-line services as well as people with lived experience of domestic and family violence. The insights from the co-design have informed the development of the hub, which will progress innovative solutions to address domestic and family violence in the community.

The government funded the Domestic Violence Crisis Service’s Room4Change behaviour change program for men who have used domestic and family violence. It provides specific consideration of the needs of diverse groups, especially Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. This innovative program is supporting women and children to stay safely in their homes while providing therapeutic interventions for participating men. In May 2017 the ACT Family Violence Act was amended to provide a broader definition of family violence to protect victims from the full range of coercive, controlling and abusive behaviour.

With the completion of the ACT prevention of violence against women and children strategy 2011-17, the ACT will adopt the national plan to reduce violence against women and their children 2010-22 as its overarching strategy. ACT activities and initiatives focused on addressing family and domestic violence, including the safer families package, will be captured in the reporting framework of the national plan as well as through the annual safer families ministerial statement.

As a community and as a nation, we have come a long way in recent years in recognising that domestic and family violence is not just a private matter; it is a crime


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