Health justice partnerships have been named in the Federal Budget 2021 as an approach to provide access to legal and mental health support for women experiencing domestic and family violence.
In announcing a $17 million extension of the Women’s Safety Package, which aims to take action against domestic violence, the Federal Government has named domestic violence units and health justice partnerships as the targets of this investment. This is a step in the right direction towards funding innovative responses to domestic and family violence.
Health Justice Australia CEO, Dr Tessa Boyd-Caine, welcomes the funding announcement.
“Health justice partnerships offer a pathway to legal help for women experiencing domestic and family violence through the trusted health settings they are already accessing. We’re pleased the government has heard our call to fund approaches like health justice partnership that respond to people seeking help at the times and in the places that they trust.”
“Women experiencing domestic and family violence are more vulnerable than others to a range of legal needs including family law, victim of crime proceedings, housing, immigration and money issues. They are also more likely to seek help from or be in contact with health services than legal assistance services.”
“While many health services screen for domestic and family violence, they may not have all the tools required to respond to the range of issues arising. Health justice partnerships embed lawyers into healthcare settings and teams to help address intersecting health and legal issues facing patients, such as domestic and family violence.”
About health justice partnership
In Australia many people experience three or more legal problems a year. While people often don’t think of the law as a tool to help them, there are legal solutions to many problems. By placing legal help within more health and human service settings around the country – and increasing access to these services when and where they are needed most – health justice partnerships can resolve the intersecting health and legal problems that drive need.
Health Justice Australia supports the effectiveness and expansion of this collaborative service model, working with more than 70 examples of legal help in healthcare settings across Australia.
Health Justice Australia CEO Dr Tessa Boyd-Caine is available for comment. Call 02 8316 0516 (monitored all hours) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit our website for more information on health justice partnership.