NEWS RELEASE · 11th September 2015
VICTORIA - As part of its commitment under the Provincial Domestic Violence Plan, the B.C. government is investing $500,000 to increase access to transition house and safe-home services for Aboriginal women and children who are affected by domestic violence.
"Aboriginal women in B.C. are nearly three times more likely to be victims of domestic violence than non-Aboriginal women - and that's completely unacceptable," said Minister of Children and Family Development Stephanie Cadieux. "Whether they need bus tickets, legal counsel or personal documents, this funding will help more Aboriginal women and children get the help they need to escape from violent situations and rebuild their lives."
The $500,000 has been distributed through BC Housing to 56 transition houses and safe homes to provide subsidies to Aboriginal women and children and to help improve access to transition-house and safe-home programs and services throughout British Columbia.
"We are committed to working with our partners across the province, including those who manage transition houses and safe homes, to help more Aboriginal women, children and youth feel safe," said Minister of Natural Gas Development and Minister Responsible for Housing Rich Coleman. "This funding will help them access the supports they need to regain their independence and build a new life."
"Sometimes women and children need to flee a violent situation with only the clothes on their backs - they have to rebuild their lives from nothing," said Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation John Rustad. "Through this investment, transition houses and safe homes will be able to work with these families to get them what they need and keep them safe."
For example, the subsidy will be used towards the cost of:
* Transportation to a transition house/safe home, a doctor's appointment or lawyer meeting, or to fly a high-risk client out of the community.
* Medical and legal services.
* Important documents, such as identification.
* Clothing and personal items if the woman/child had to leave their home quickly.
"Transition houses and safe homes across the province provide a safe, supportive place for women and children who are dealing with the effects of domestic violence and other violent crimes," said Catherine Talbott, executive director of the BC Society of Transition Houses. "Thanks to this investment, more vulnerable Aboriginal women and children will be able to get the help and support they need to rebuild their lives."
The investment will be used over the next two years and supports the second- and third-year commitments under the three-year, $5.5-million Provincial Domestic Violence Plan - to provide direct services for Aboriginal children, youth and families, as well as providing services in rural and remote communities.
One of the 56 houses which recieved funding was Dunmore Place Transition House in Kitimat, the money went to the Tamitik Status of Women
Comment by Women's Advocate on 12th September 2015
It is fantastic that our provincial government is using tax monies to support the transition housing projects. The concern I have is - where is this government addressing the root cause of the abuse? We need funding to educate the abusers, the abused and most importantly the children - so we can STOP THE CYCLE OF ABUSE. Giving more money to the transition housing is only a bandaid solution to get people out of immediate danger, it in no way helps to prevent further violence. This is a federal election issue. Ask your MP's what their parties plan is to address the issue of violence against women and children. Demand answers...and cast an educated vote on October 19th.