Alister Henskens portrait
Alister Henskens portrait

Funding Boost for Women's Safety

Old fashioned street light

Public spaces, parklands and transport hubs across the state will undergo a safety overhaul under a re-elected Liberal and Nationals Government as part of a $30 million boost to the Safer Cities program to ensure women and girls are safe in public.

State Member for Ku-ring-gai Alister Henskens SC said this investment means local women will benefit as the Safer Cities program is doubled to deliver important safety upgrades right across NSW.

“Every single person has the right to feel safe in public and that is why we’re doubling our investment to boost safety infrastructure in our parks and on our streets so that everyone feels safe, particularly women,” Mr Henskens said.

“This funding builds on the Liberal and Nationals Government’s $787 million investment to deliver important initiatives that boost the safety of women and girls across our state and new initiatives, including the ‘Right to Ask’ scheme.”

Minister for Women’s Safety and the Prevention of Domestic and Sexual Violence Natalie Ward said the program was important to improve safety and reduce harassment on our streets.

“This is not a one-off fix and it is critical we continue to engage with women and girls to identify areas that can be improved so women and girls can feel safe in our cities, especially after dark,” Mrs Ward said.

“That’s why a re-elected Liberals and Nationals Government will work with the Women’s Safety Commissioner to roll out a reporting system so women can identify places that feel unsafe.

“I have also instructed the Secretary of Transport undertake a review to consider how existing practices and infrastructure could be bolstered to improve the safety, comfort and confidence of women who use public transport.”

The Safer Cities Program has three goals, which are aligned with the UN Safer Cities for Girls program:

  • Increasing women and girls’ safety and access to public spaces;
  • Enabling women and girls to move freely and alone in their community; and
  • Increasing women and girls’ engagement with how the spaces around them are designed and managed.

Final locations to receive funding will be recommended by NSW Government agencies based on a range of factors including BOCSAR data.

These announcements build upon the NSW Liberal and Nationals’ recent commitments to boosting women’s safety, including:

  • $20 million for up to 200 additional electronic monitoring devices to monitor domestic violence offenders;
  • Rental bonds to help victim-survivors of domestic violence to help rebuild their lives;
  • Reviewing all sentences for domestic violence related offences;
  • Funding a specialise Domestic and Family Violence list in three locations and give additional magistrates; and
  • Undertaking a feasibility study into establishing a dedicated Domestic and Family Violence court.

The NSW Liberal and Nationals Government has also introduced the ‘Right to Ask’ scheme, where people can find out if their partner has a history of domestic violence offences.