Advocacy at Elizabeth Morgan House

Many policies and practices enacted by government and other agencies are not made with the input of or consideration for Aboriginal women and children. Systemic discrimination will continue if Aboriginal women and children continue to be without a voice.

Elizabeth Morgan House believes in Aboriginal self-determination, in accordance with the International Human Rights principles outlined in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 2003. 

 

We work together with Aboriginal Women within their communities to ensure safe and culturally strong futures for our women, children and youth.  Our current focuses are: 

  • Dignity in the Justice system 

  • Transitional housing for women and families in crisis 

  • Free Clarke St 

  • Creation of an EMHAWS Women’s Centre 

Advocacy Priorities

Justice Scale

DIGNITY IN THE JUSTICE SYSTEM

Despite representing only 3% of the general population, Aboriginal women make up 30% of the prison system. 

 

Healthcare is routinely denied to our women and support services on release are underfunded. 

 

Deaths in custody continue. This is unacceptable.  

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EMH IS ASKING FOR

  • Protection of human rights of women in custody such as the same access to health care 

  • Reform of bail laws which disproportionately impact our Aboriginal women and children 

  • Implementation of RCIADIC recommendations to use imprisonment as a last resort  

  • System accountability, culturally appropriate training and improved governance across all services

  • An increase access to culturally appropriate services and to end deaths in custody.  

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BETTER HOUSING OPTIONS

Victoria’s Aboriginal population has grown 30% between the 2016 and 2021 Census. Aboriginal women and children remain disproportionately impacted by family violence.  

 

Transitional housing is the first step in rebuilding your life. The chronic shortage of places to go after refuge makes the next steps incredibly difficult.

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EMH IS ASKING FOR

Funding for Aboriginal families transitioning out of secure refuge into rental accommodation such as a landlord incentive scheme. 

Key in the Lock

FREE CLARKE ST

EMH’s Clarke St property was donated by a local businessman. In 1989, after a $100k government grant was issued, the State Government put a 52% caveat over the property and any future property. Despite offering to pay back the original grant, the government has to date refused to remove the caveat. It keeps EMH operations and future growth trapped. 

 

This is the opposite of Aboriginal self-determination. 

 

A free Clarke St means we can expand our services, our staff levels and our impact.

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EMH IS ASKING FOR

The removal of the caveat on 441 Clarke St free and clear.