COSS Network Statement: Dangerous and outrageous — Councils of Social Service condemn proposed funding cut to national voice for First Nations women on domestic violence

The Councils of Social Service across the country have joined together to urge the Morrison Government to reinstate funding to the National Family Violence Prevention and Legal Services Forum (NFVPLS) the national peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander victims and survivors of domestic violence.

The National Family Violence Prevention and Legal Services Forum is vital to eradicating our country’s shameful rates of domestic violence.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander survivors of domestic violence must be heard.

The Morrison Government’s decision to defund this crucial organisation appears to be an attempt to silence services who every day provide vital support to women all over the country.

This is an inexplicable decision and must be reversed immediately.

The National Family Violence Prevention and Legal Services Forum plays an invaluable role, advocating for the safety of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their children, with the little government funding it has received, in the order of $250,000 a year — a mere fraction of the Government’s $35 billion in tax cuts.

Instead of cutting funding, the Morrison Government should be listening to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and strengthening its investment in their advocacy.