Domestic Violence crisis accommodation a step closer for the Douglas Shire



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At today’s Ordinary Council meeting it was determined that Council will lodge a grant application to the Australia Government to fund domestic violence crisis accommodation in the Douglas Shire.

Should the Safe Places Emergency Accommodation Grant application be successful Douglas Shire Council has committed to providing a suitable block of land in Mossman for two self-contained units.

The Douglas Shire has one of Queensland’s highest rates of reported domestic and family violence yet has no crisis or supported accommodation service.

The Council resolution is a big step towards securing local emergency accommodation, which has been a key advocacy issue since 2017.

Currently, women and children in need of emergency accommodation are referred to refuges in Cairns or further afield meaning they may have to leave family, friends, jobs and schools in order to receive help. 

Douglas Shire Mayor Julia Leu said the current practice of referring these women to refuges down south was ineffective and hindered recovery.

“Our community has been crying out for a crisis accommodation service to keep women and their children in the community while they rebuild their life after escaping domestic and family violence,” she said.

“Council has been working closely with Queensland Police Service and local domestic violence groups to build a strong case for this much-needed facility.”

The decision was passed unanimously by all Council members today with Cr Abigail Noli saying she was excited to see this next step bring the reality of crisis accommodation for the Shire closer.

“This is something particularly close to my heart, I’m on the Mossman Community Centre Support Services bored and I have worked with staff there and I see the problem that they face and we are all very aware of the problems that we have around here,” Cr Noli said.

The Safe Places Emergency Accommodation Grant is now open with capital grants from $100,000 to $10 million available for DV emergency accommodation.

Council officers are preparing a grant application for the closing date of 14 February 2020.

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