'Not kicking the can': PM flags more on male violence

A financial package to help women escape domestic violence is far from mission accomplished in addressing the crisis, the prime minister has declared.

Women fleeing violent or abusive relationships will receive $5000 payments as part of a $925 million package announced after an emergency national cabinet meeting.

The Leaving Violence Program will be a permanent extension of a trial and come into effect from 2025.

Violence against women rally Canberra
Family violence prevention is chronically under-funded, the sector says. (Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS)

But the announcement has been criticised for being made more than a year before the program becomes permanent.

The government is also under fire over a lack of new funding for frontline crisis services.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said the measure would not be the only step to address violence against women.

"It's not job done. This isn't something you solve with a meeting in one day. This is something that governments are determined to take action on," he told ABC Radio on Thursday.

Mr Albanese defended the wait time between the announcement of the permanent program and its start date, saying the government had a responsibility to ensure taxpayers' money went to eligible people.

National cabinet will meet in the next quarter to discuss violence against women and data-sharing on gendered violence will be on the agenda.

"Just as we worked on a national firearms register, what we want to make sure is that if there are perpetrators who are crossing state boundaries, that data and appropriate information is available," he said.

"We're not kicking the can down the road."

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton said while it was positive national cabinet was a united front on addressing gendered violence, money needed to be spent to ramp up successful programs.

"There's a lot that hasn't been done or that's missing, and there's a lot of frustration from the frontline police and ambos and social workers," he told Sydney radio station 2GB.

"They don't know where some of the money's being spent, and they can't find the spots available for crisis accommodation or circumstances otherwise, which are just horrific."

Greens senator Larissa Waters said the financial payments for those escaping violence did not go far enough.

"I was genuinely shocked and really disappointed that all we saw ... was the extension of a program, set up under Scott Morrison, that's been plagued with maladministration and delays," she told ABC TV.

Concerns have also been raised that hundreds of violent men are spending up to five months on behavioural change waiting lists, compromising public safety.

Men's behavioural change programs are identified as a key service perpetrators should access as part of the 10-year national plan to end violence against women and children.

Violence against women rally Sydney
Thousands joined weekend marches in protest of violence against women. (Steven Markham/AAP PHOTOS)

Service providers working with violent men say they cannot keep up with demand.

No to Violence, which runs the national Men's Referral Service, estimates about 480 men are on waitlists in NSW. Wait times average three to five months.

"Fifty per cent of these men are still in relationships," chief executive Phillip Ripper told AAP.

In Victoria, the Magistrates Court is canning its court-mandated counselling order program, with no clear plans on what it will be replaced with from July 1.

The court said the program did not cater for substantial parts of the community with its stringent entry requirements and only about four per cent of people subject to family violence orders received counselling orders.

Premier Jacinta Allan said the Victorian government had no role in the court's decision to look at changing program providers.

"There needs to be a continuation of these programs," she told reporters on Thursday.

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