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Economic cost of domestic violence must be factored into MYEFO and budget

Media Release
Larissa Waters 23 Nov 2015

The Australian Greens are calling on the Turnbull Government to factor the Our Watch report on the economic cost of violence against women, released today, into MYEFO and next year's budget.

The report shows violence against women costs the economy $21.7 billion a year and that one million Australian women endured physical or sexual violence, emotional abuse or stalking in the last year.

"It's impossible to put a number on the amount of damage that violence against women inflicts, but this report provides helpful insight into the economic costs," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens spokesperson for women, said.

"The Turnbull Government needs to recognise and take steps to reduce the staggering economic cost, on top of the unquantifiable emotional, physical and social toll, in the upcoming MYEFO and next year's budget.

"To end our nation's domestic violence crisis, our women's refuges, legal services and crisis lines must be properly funded, with additional funding for prevention and education programs.

"In the 2014 federal Budget, $44 million was cut from the construction of new emergency accommodation, including women's shelters, and this has still not been reversed.

"The report shows that prevention programs can reduce violence against women, which is the tragic consequence of gender inequality.

"By achieving gender equality we can prevent violence against women before it is committed and by properly funding crisis services we can ensure women are not forced to return to violent situations.

"The government's Women's Safety Package announced earlier in the year was welcome, albeit under-funded, but it didn't provide any additional secure funding to community legal centres, and no additional funding at all for Indigenous legal services," Senator Waters said.

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