Plans for new shelter for women

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The National, Friday February 7th, 2014

 AUSTRALIA will build a management centre to address domestic violence cases in Lae, Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop says.

She said the A$3 million centre would serve as a shelter for victims of domestic and sexual violence. 

Lae, the second largest city in the country, has one of the highest rates of domestic violence. It includes ethnic clashes and criminal activities.

Bishop said the A$3 million would be appropriated over a three-year period. The location and time of construction is to be confirmed. 

“The centre will provide shelter for abused women,” Bishop said.

“The centre will work closely with the police and courts.”

Bishop said sexual and domestic violence was unacceptable everywhere in the world including Australia and the United States.

Bishop said the Australian government was committed to seeing that violence against women was stamped out.

She said women empowerment was close to her heart and women needed to be empowered economically for a more resilient economy. 

Bishop said she met women leaders, including Lae MP Loujaya Kouza, in Port Moresby on Wednesday to discuss the issue.

She said the resource centre would be managed by well-trained people.

She said Oxfam International and a university from Australia should provide support and technical expertise for the centre.