In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)

In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)
ACT Public Hospitals

Canberra Hospital

5124 0000


Calvary Hospital

6201 6111

Mental Health

Call Mental Health Triage on

1800 629 354

(free call except from mobiles or public phones) or

6205 1065

Poisons Hotline

For a poison emergency in Australia call

131126

Drug and Alcohol Help Line

The Drug and Alcohol Help Line is available 24-hours, 7 days a week on

5124 9977

Health Protection Service

For after hours urgent public health matters including environmental health, radiation safety, food poisoning and communicable disease management phone:

(02) 6205 1700

healthdirect

24 hour health advice

1800 022 222

ACT State Emergency Service

Emergency help
during flood or storms

132 500

What are we doing


What are we doing?

The Family Safety Hub’s work is focussed on priority areas including:-

  • preventing housing and financial crisis
  • supporting children and young people and
  • early intervention for pregnant women and new families.
Early intervention for pregnant women and new families

Women are at a greater risk of experiencing domestic and family violence during pregnancy and when they have young children. If violence already exists in a relationship it is likely to get worse at this time.

Typically, it is only during or after a crisis that a woman will seek support from family violence services, health services, police, lawyers and courts. Families at risk of experiencing domestic and family violence need to be supported earlier to help prevent violence from happening or escalating to a crisis.

Providing this early support was the topic of the Family Safety Hub’s first challenge workshop attended by representatives from the community sector, government, front line services, health and legal professionals. Attendees generated nearly 60 ideas for the Hub’s first challenge topic.

Watch this short video on the first challenge topicExternal Link

Our first co-designed pilot program is helping pregnant women and new families who are experiencing domestic and family violence to access free legal services through three health justice partnerships.

The service was prototyped and tested with more than 55 health, community and legal professionals, before the three partnerships were established at Calvary Public Hospital, Centenary Hospital for Women and Children and Gungahlin Child and Family Centre.

We know people tend to seek help from trusted professionals. The partnerships provided free and confidential legal advice in locations where parents go for health or family appointments and may already have established relationships.

Watch this short video on the first co-designed pilot programExternal Link

Read more about the health justice partnership, including our review of the pilot.

Preventing financial and housing crisis

The decision to leave a violent relationship can result in extreme financial hardship, even poverty and homelessness. Access to financial resources and housing is one of the most pressing concerns for people in the ACT when they are deciding whether to leave a violent relationship.

Domestic and family violence is one of the leading causes of homelessness in Australia, particularly for women and children. Women in middle income brackets experiencing domestic and family violence have trouble accessing support. In the ACT, more than half of women who leave a violent relationship lose their home within one year. Fixed costs such as a mortgage, rent, child care, utilities and legal costs can lead to financial insecurity after the end of a violent relationship.

Watch this short video about the second Family Safety Hub challenge topicExternal Link.


Following a period of discovery research and insights gathering the Family Safety Hub held an ideas generation workshop with financial service providers, crisis services, housing providers and government agencies. The participants identified potential solutions that could help prevent a housing or financial crisis occurring and remove this as a barrier to someone seeking a pathway to safety.

Download a summary of the ideas generation workshop [PDF 3.7MB]

Download the evaluation report of the workshop [PDF 652KB]

View a visual summary of the process that took us from discovery to the ideas generation workshop [PDF 480KB]

The first idea generated during the workshop is now being developed for testing. This program is focused on recognising and responding to financial abuse. Financial abuse is a very common feature of domestic and family violence, but it is often not recognised, or not recognised as abuse, both by those affected and frontline services. We are working in partnership with Care Inc to design and deliver a program to increase the ability of frontline service staff to recognise when someone is subjected to financial abuse. We are testing our hypothesis that an increase in capability will mean people affected by financial abuse will be identified and receive the right support.

Supporting children and young people

Domestic and family violence impacts all children and young people who live with it. They do not need to be directly assaulted, or even present, to be victims. Adults design policy and system responses, which fail to meet young people’s needs. To change this, we must understand the unique experiences and perspectives of young people.

The Family Safety Hub and the Children and Young People Commissioner partnered to listen to young people’s experience of domestic and family violence. 70 young people aged 13 to 24 shared their views or personal stories of living with family violence during in-depth interviews and group discussions.

These consultations confirmed children and young people’s experiences of family violence are different to those of adults. They need different supports and services but their experience is of a system response designed by, and for, adults.

By consulting with young people we have generated insights that will enable the ACT Government, the service sector and the community to improve support and services for children and young people affected by domestic and family violence.

You can read the insights and learn more about the project.