FUNDING CUTS TO HURT DAREBIN COMMUNITY LEGAL CENTRE

Statement

I was proud to last week stand with Victorian Attorney-General Martin Pakula, member for Northcote Fiona Richardson and staff from the Darebin Community Legal Centre as we together called on the Turnbull government to scrap its cruel cuts to community legal centre funding. The Darebin Community Legal Centre has been helping our local community since 1978. Their family law program, in particular, has been supporting the victims of family violence and touching the lives of 430 families and over 1,000 children every year.

Under the Turnbull government’s cuts, they will lose over $130,000 per annum. Critically, this means that their family law program, upon which so many rely, will cease to operate from 30 June this year if those cuts proceed. Without this program, victims of domestic violence will be forced to negotiate family law issues with their violent ex-partners, exposing them to continuing risk. It is absurd that this government will not invest $30 million in desperately needed community services, but they are more than eager to give big business a $50 billion tax cut. For the sake of those vulnerable members of our community who rely on the Darebin Community Legal Centre, I urge this government to rethink their cruel cuts before it is too late. It is vital that we fund equal access to justice.

22 MARCH 2017.

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