DV funding fail raised in Parliament
A GOLD Coast legal community service was the only one in the state not to get funding despite being in the domestic violence frontline, State Parliament has been told.
In an embarrassing Facebook gotcha moment, Opposition frontbencher Ros Bates has exposed how her Labor rival in the State poll agreed to fight to get funding for My Community Legal at Robina.
Ms Bates had tabled in Parliament a Facebook post from "Labor's own failed candidate in Mudgeeraba" Maxim Otten-Kamp, in which he is photographed at the centre and speaks up about the free legal consultations and how the service was struggling to get funding.
"If I'm elected I will fight to make sure that organisations like these get their fair share," he posted.
Ms Bates told the Bulletin: "It beggars belief that Labor is refusing to fund a community legal service on the Gold Coast at a time when demand is so high. It can save lives."
During an Estimates hearing in Brisbane on Monday, Ms Bates asked Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman about DV funding and why My Community Legal missed out given the Minister earlier had talked up a record funding spend.
"Will the Attorney-General commit to funding My Community Legal centre in Robina which is the only community legal centre not funded in the state?"
Ms Fentiman said government followed a procurement process, and the Robina centre was unsuccessful in applying but the Gold Coast Community Legal Centre, which covers that area, received funding.
Ms Bates told Estimates: "Minister, they have been waiting seven years to get funding. As you would be aware 75 per cent of the people they represent are domestic and family violence people.
"I can't understand the system as to why they are the only community legal centre in the state (to not get funding), and the only community legal centre that can represent people on the southern Gold Coast."
Ms Fentiman told Estimates: "As I said, at the moment our state funding includes an additional $5.6 million for CLCs, there was an open and robust tender process that allocated available Commonwealth and state funding to CLCs.
"Understandably (Robina) they were disappointed. They have been provided feedback, written and face-to-face from the previous funding round - and from the most recent process.
"I'm also informed that there are many community legal centres that were not successful in getting this funding and Robina legal service is not the only one."
Ms Bates told the Minister: "My understanding is it is not - thank you anyway, Minister."
During the election Ms Bates promised to provide $600,000 in funding for My Community Legal if the LNP won government.
Maxim Otten-Kamp also reached out the Bulletin after reading Ms Bates' comments.
"Obviously I'm just a private citizen now and my ability to sway government is rather limited," he said.
"Ros Bates as the sitting member for 11 years has far more sway than I do.
"I don't think it's a very useful use of her time attacking a 'failed candidate' as she called me."firstname.lastname@example.org
Originally published as DV funding fail: Embarrassing moment over Coast group