The Federal Government has announced a new one-off payment of up to $5,000 to help women establish a life free of violence.
Member for Riverina Michael McCormack has welcomed this saying: “No-one should have to put up with violent relationships and what’s more they should not be condemned to staying in violent relationships because they can’t afford to leave.
“Too often, we hear the experiences of women who desperately want to leave but are literally shackled to violent partners because they don’t have the means to start a new life; they fear they cannot support themselves or their children – and that is not acceptable.”
Under the two-year Escaping Violence Payment trial women will receive financial assistance of up to $1,500 in cash with the remainder available for goods and services or direct payments of bonds, school fees or other support to help establish a safe home.
The UnitingCare Australia Consortium has been selected as the service provider to deliver the payments and will also support women to engage with other relevant services that support women and their children. This includes other Commonwealth or State and Territory government-funded community services.
The Escaping Violence Payment is not considered taxable or reportable income and will not impact on any other social security payments a recipient may be receiving. Eligibility includes financial stress and evidence of domestic violence including, but not limited to, a referral from a family and domestic violence service provider with a risk assessment and safety plan, an AVO, court order or a police report.
Women can apply for the payment through the UnitingCare Network. More information is available at unitingvictas.org.au/escaping-violence-payment