This afternoon I was very pleased to officially christen Elsie Walk, a formerly nameless laneway in Glebe, as a tribute to Australia's first women's refuge for victims of domestic violence.
Established in Glebe in 1974 by a brave group of women, Elsie Refuge helped pioneer a crucial service in our community.
Statistics show one in three Australian women over the age of 15 report physical or sexual violence at some time in their lives, and domestic and family violence is the major cause of homelessness for women and their children.
Over the years Elsie Refuge for Women and Children has helped thousands of people in need by providing 24 hour crisis accommodation and support.
There are now more than 300 refuges for women across Australia, providing safety and security for women and children escaping violence who have nowhere else to go.
The Glebe Community Action Group suggested naming the laneway Elsie Walk, as a way to acknowledge this important part of the area's history.
It was great to see so many people from the local community attend today's event and I hope the naming of Elsie Walk helps raise awareness of the invaluable work the refuge does.