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Senate wishes ‘happy 40th birthday’ to Women’s House – Queensland’s oldest women’s shelter

Media Release
Larissa Waters 10 Nov 2015

The Senate has this afternoon supported an Australian Greens' motion marking the 40th birthday of Brisbane's Women's House - Queensland's oldest women's shelter.

"Women's House has saved the lives of many Queensland women and children over its 40 years," Senator Larissa Waters, the Australian Greens spokesperson for women, said.

"We are fortunate to have Australia's oldest independent women's shelter in our state, which I have had the opportunity to visit to learn about its eventful history and the invaluable work it carries on today.

"As well as helping women escape and recover from violence, Women's House has long performed an important advocacy role by leading marches and protests and helping establish other women's services in the area.

"Women's House is a strong feminist voice and a lifeline to so many women in grave danger.

"I wish this wonderful organisation a happy 40th birthday, and on a sad note, acknowledge that across the state women's refuges and legal services are struggling to keep up with the tragically high demand.

"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.

"To end our state'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," Senator Waters said.   

Women's House is celebrating its 40th birthday tomorrow evening, with an fantastic panel of speakers and musicians, including Thelma Plum and Lou Rozensteins, who has written a book about the history of Women's House.

The event will be held at the Princess Theatre on Wednesday, 11th of November at 6pm. For tickets and more information:


Text of motion:



Women’s House

The Senate -


  1. Notes that:
    1. This year marks forty years since foundation of Women’s House in Brisbane by members of the community.
    2. Women’s House is Queensland’s oldest women’s shelter, and is now Australia’s oldest independent women’s shelter. 
  2. Commends the work of Women’s House over the last forty years, and the work of women’s shelters across Australia who help thousands of women escaping domestic violence every year. 


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