ECAJ applauds $40 million Safer Communities Fund

June 2, 2016 by J-Wire Staff
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A re-elected Turnbull Coalition Government will establish a $40 million Safer Communities Fund.

Robert Goot

Robert Goot

The President of  The Executive Council of Australian Jewry Robert Goot said: “From our conversations with government Ministers we understand that about half of this sum will be available to fund the security needs of communal institutions.

These will include schools, (which may already be covered under the Secure Schools program),  and significantly, for the first time, other community institutions such as places of worship, museums and community centres.  This is a very important step forward and one which we have been advocating to the government for some time in direct discussions and written submissions. We commend the government wholeheartedly for broadening the group of communal institutions which are eligible for security funding.”.

Mr Goot said that it is too early to judge the overall amount of government security funding which will be available to Jewish community institutions under the new scheme.   “It will depend on the overall  number of applications the government ultimately receives and how they will be assessed and prioritised” he said .

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull addresses the Central Photo: Henry Benjamin/J-Wire

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at Sydney’s Central Synagogue Photo: Henry Benjamin/J-Wire

The fund will deliver on the Coalition’s ongoing commitment to keep Australians safe and secure because only safe communities can be strong and prosperous, and the best way to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour is to prevent it happening.

The $40 million Safer Communities Fund will consist of two streams:

  • Stream one will boost the efforts of identified local governments and community organisations to address crime and anti-social behaviour by funding crime prevention initiatives (such as fixed and mobile CCTV and lighting).
  • Stream two will boost efforts to protect schools, pre-schools and community organisations that are facing security risks associated with racial or religious intolerance.

This new $40 million fund will build on the previous work the Coalition undertook during Government through the $50 million Safer Streets Programme and the $18 million Schools Security Programme.

A government statement reads: “Our community safety record is solid – the Coalition has now committed more than $100 million purely to assist local communities in delivering strategies to address crime and anti-social behaviour because we recognise that local solutions are often the best way to deal with local issues.

We will continue to reinvest money confiscated from criminals, and put those funds towards projects that make our streets, communities and our nation safer.”

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