Better Protection For Family Violence Victims In Our Courts
A project making it easier for Victorian victims of family violence to seek protection through our courts will be expanded and improved under the Victorian Government’s inaugural Public Sector Innovation Fund.
Special Minister of State Gavin Jennings today announced grant funding of $365,000 for the roll out of an online Family Violence Intervention Order application to the busiest Magistrates’ Courts in Victoria.
An online form has been piloted since mid-2015 by the Neighbourhood Justice Centre, Victoria’s centre for innovative practice in justice. Unlike the paper-based form it is a simple, convenient, and secure application which can be completed on a smartphone, tablet or PC.
The new system flags risk earlier for court staff to bring to the immediate attention of Magistrates, ensuring the courts can prioritise high risk cases earlier, as well as working with police and services to support women’s safety prior to attending court.
The new, simpler, form has been a response to recommendation 25 from the Coroner’s findings and inquest into the death of Luke Batty.
This announcement coincides with the Victoria Against Violence campaign, which was launched by the Andrews Labor Government on 25 November. The campaign runs for 16 days and seeks to bring attention to the devastating impact that family violence has on the lives of so many.
The project also marks the launch of the $11 million Public Sector Innovation Fund, a new grants program designed to drive new and more effective solutions to policy and service delivery challenges.
The Innovation Fund is a key part of the ‘Good Government’ reform agenda that includes supporting innovative ideas from people working in and with government as part of the broader ‘public purpose sector.’
Public sector reform puts people first with a strong commitment to improving the lives of Victorians, through a leading public sector workforce, and engaged citizens and communities strengthening our democracy.
Applications for the Innovation Fund are now open. More information is available at: www.publicsectorinnovation.vic.gov.au
Quotes attributable to Special Minister of State Gavin Jennings
“I am extremely pleased to support this collaborative innovation. Together we can continue to create public value and build trust.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Fiona Richardson
“We are committed to identifying and addressing gaps, improving access and ensuring that the justice system is as innovative as it can be.”
Quotes attributable to the Director, Neighbourhood Justice Centre Kerry Walker
“The online form puts women back at the centre of the process and reduces some of the confusion and anxiety about applying over the counter in a court.”
Definition Public Purpose Sector comprises government, not-for-profit organisations, charities, associations, education providers, business, philanthropists, entrepreneurs and communities of interest.