26 September, 2016. 14:10
CLANCY OVERELL | Editor | CONTACT
Embattled NSW Premier Mike Baird has today unveiled his greatest political achievement since the world-renowned lock-out laws. That is, self-funding women’s refuge shelters.
“This is a world first,” he said.
“To use our nation’s roaring gambling culture to counter our nation’s drastic culture of domestic violence,”
While speaking at a media conference outside his electoral office in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, the Premier announced that – like any struggling community organisation – pokie machines can play a vital role in boosting the elasticity in funding for the state’s battling refuge shelters.
“It’s worked for the RSL’s and it’s worked for the Surf Clubs. Why can’t our women’s shelters have the same kind of access to predatory money-printing?”
“If I can shut down an entire city because of two young men were coward punched while walking Sydney’s streets – I think I ought to provide the same kind of support for the Australian women who are coward punched by their husbands behind closed doors in the suburbs every night,”
“These women’s shelters are a perfect solution. A great way for them to interact with other community members,”
This announcement comes months after the Bathurst Regional Library in New South Wales’ central-west announced it’s intention to fit out aisles A-K with poker machines, in an attempt to not only raise funds ahead of council merging, but to also encourage locals to take their children to the library.
Baird has announced the ribbon-cutting of up to 10 different multi-purpose refuge and gaming shelters across the state, with another 15 to come in low socio-economic areas.
He says this is a new step towards making up the losses that NSW is to expect following his decision to ban greyhound racing across the state, and in turn handing off the heritage-listed CBD race track of Wentworth Park to the Hillsong Church.
“It’s a step in the right direction to keep our women safe,”
“However, we will have to make sure the situations they are escaping aren’t being recreated in the shelters,”
“These women have a right to say which punters can and can’t play the pokies in these centres,”