- New approach to dealing with deeply entrenched community issues by working with Roebourne to support victims, families and communities to heal and rebuild
- Suite of initiatives for Roebourne including safe houses, a men's shelter and stronger links between education and job training
The State Government is working closely with Aboriginal elders and community members to finalise the West Pilbara Plan, which will help address intergenerational disadvantage and child sexual abuse in and around the town of Roebourne.
The plan builds on 18 months of community led work, including a local initiative called '6718 Advantage' to better support children and families in Roebourne.
Under the plan, the State Government has committed to focus collective action on six priority areas:
- More support for children, carers and families
- A safer community for children
- Tackling alcohol and drugs
- Greater engagement in school and work
- Healing the community
- Reprioritising government contracts and services
A number of community identified projects and initiatives have already been endorsed by Government for action, including:
- The establishment of a residential facility to support family and cultural healing;
- The establishment of 10 supported safe houses in and around Roebourne;
- Specialised Alcohol and other Drug services for children and youth;
- Upskilling local service providers and community members on abuse and trauma identification, referral processes, protective behaviours and effective interventions;
- More youth activities at nights, on weekends and during school holidays;
- Realigning the community night patrol (which focuses on adults) to now focus on youth;
- Establishing a Roebourne Men's Shelter to allow women and children experiencing domestic violence to stay in their home and encourage men to access support; and
- Industry training and job pathways for local people.
Comments attributed to Child Protection, Prevention of Family and Domestic Violence and Community Services Minister Simone McGurk:
"When finalised, the West Pilbara Plan will demonstrate a new way of dealing with deeply entrenched community issues. It is about government and the community walking side by side, to make sure children are safe, healthy, getting to school and have a connection to their culture.
"That process has started but will take many years to complete. To show goodwill, the State Government has already committed to support projects and initiatives that the Roebourne Aboriginal community has been asking for over a decade, such as a dedicated men's shelter and a one-stop shop for family services in the town.
"We need to do this with the community of Roebourne, not to them - we know that a government imposed response will never be as effective as one owned by the community."
Minister's office - 6552 6600