We all know Broken Hill is suffering from a housing crisis.
Whether you are renting or purchasing a property – it is a struggle across our town, but it is even more worrying for people suffering from domestic violence [DV] because often they literally have nowhere to go.
Back in June of this year, New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet said funding would be invested in helping victim-survivors of domestic violence minimise the trauma experienced during legal proceedings.
Conspicuous by its absence in that statement back in June was any official verbiage that directly addressed finding new homes for sufferers of DV. There was this piece of lip service from the Premier …
“A safe home is the foundation of a good life.
We owe it to all people who have suffered from domestic abuse to support them find a home that is free from violence and pursue legal action if they choose to.”
… but not a lot else.
This is something Councillor Ron Page has pushed and pushed to get rectified, with not a lot of joy.
“I have been trying for the last two years to get some accommodation built for domestic violence [victim-survivors].
It’s an area we need to push and push as hard as we can for the benefit of all Broken Hill,” Cllr Page told the Barrier Truth.
“It’s an area I have worked really hard to try and improve over the last two years, but unfortunately haven’t been able to make much progress.”
Getting an accurate picture of the situation here is a difficult proposition.
The Barrier Truth contacted various facilities that help people in DV situations with the hope of getting information on how the system works and what the statistics are but received no return contact.
Something that Cllr Page corroborated.
“It is pretty hard to get a true indication with regards to statistics,” he told us.
This is problematic, not just for Broken Hill, but for the entire region that Broken Hill serves as a hub for these types of services.
“It’s a big issue for a big area,” Cllr Page told us.
He has a plan that would see DV victim-survivors receive training to help them regain confidence and gain skills that can help them with life after DV, that works in conjunction with a temporary housing situation that gives them the ‘safe home’ NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet spoke to all the way back in June of this year.
To fast-track this plan, Cllr Page would like to see the state and federal governments come to the party with funding to help fix this problem.
“A $35 million grant from the state government would be ideal to get the ball rolling.”
He went on to say that if the federal government came to the party with the same amount, the entire region would reap the benefits sooner rather than later.
The ball is now in the court of both NSW Premier Dominic Perrotet and Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.
Will our state and federal governments come to the party with meaningful action that could improve the lives of DV victim-survivors in the largest region of New South Wales? Watch this space…