08 Nov Escaping Violence Payment Trial
The Morrison Government has recently announced a two-year trial payment, termed an Escaping Violence Payment. From 19 October 2021, women escaping a violent relationship will have access to a one-off payment of $5,000 – comprised of up to $1,500 cash and the balance available for goods or expenses such school fees or rental bonds – to assist them re-establishing themselves upon leaving the relationship. The violence that categorises the relationship can be physical, verbal, sexual, emotional, spiritual, psychological or economic, in addition to coercive control.
The UnitingCare Australia Consortium has been nominated as the service provider to deliver the payments, in conjunction with the support they already provide to women in connecting them with other services for assistance and support.
Financial stress and evidence of domestic violence (such as a referral from another service provider with a risk assessment and safety plan, a Protection Order, Court Order or a Police Report) are the eligibility criteria, and applications are made through the Uniting Care.
The two-year trial is aimed at reducing financial impediments that can prevent women leaving violent relationships; barriers we unfortunately see regularly in practice. Importantly, the one-off payment is not reportable income and will not impact upon the recipient’s eligibility for other government assistance.