ABC News website, Sunday 11 April 2021
ABC TV 7pm Queensland news, Sunday 11 April 2021 (starts at 12 minutes 22 seconds)
Queensland domestic violence services warn there could be a “catastrophic” effect on survivors of abuse, with wait list times to go “through the roof”, and lives potentially lost, when federal government funding runs out on June 30.
Jimboomba-based family support service YFS said its $260,000 COVID funding boost had allowed it to help an additional 160 women and 60 children and young people.
But manager Sarah Vuzem said three counselling positions would have to be cut when the money runs out.
A group program called Side-by-Side, helping mothers whose sons have become violent after living through domestic abuse, would also go.
“We’re working with mothers and their adolescent sons who are using violence in the home towards either mum or siblings,” Ms Vuzem said.
“That program focuses on addressing some of the trauma, but also focuses on rebuilding attachment.
“Unfortunately, that group will end when the funding ends, which [will leave] a significant gap because there’s such a demand for that type of service.”
Ms Vuzem said that with recent reductions in income support payments and housing pressure from ongoing limited rental vacancies, they were yet to see the worst impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Across the sector, across all regions, there are concerns with capacity, so women are calling between regions to try and access support,” she said.
“There’s a sense of desperation — there’s no capacity anywhere and you know that’s only going to get worse from July 1.”