A woman fleeing domestic violence has spoken out after new COVID-19 restrictions forced her to return to sleeping in her car.
A woman fleeing domestic violence has spoken out after new COVID-19 restrictions forced her to return to sleeping in her car.

Domestic violence survivor made homeless over COVID rules

A GOLD Coast woman fleeing domestic violence says she has been left sleeping in her car after COVID-19 restrictions forced her to leave a city caravan park.

Amanda Allen has been staying at the Kirra Beach Tourist Park for just over a month, having left an abusive partner with her two dogs late last year.

The former Crossfit world champion said she had finally found a place to stay at the park after months living out of her van, but has now been told she has to leave.

"I'd been living in fear when (the pandemic) started, my hyper-vigilance and PTSD was through the roof," she said.

Amanda Allen escaped a domestic violence situation last year and after months sleeping in her car with her two dogs, Lobo and Ishka. Picture: Jerad Williams
Amanda Allen escaped a domestic violence situation last year and after months sleeping in her car with her two dogs, Lobo and Ishka. Picture: Jerad Williams

"A friend of mine told me I may be able to get into the park as an essential traveller (and) they allowed me to come here.

"Now they're closing the amenities and because I have no plumbing amenities in my van we're being ejected."

New rules coming into effect this weekend as the park opens for regular tourists mean the public amenities will be closed and all guests must be able to self-contain during their stay.

Information on the council-run site's website states recreation rooms, playgrounds, pools and communal amenity blocks will be closed "until further notice".

For Ms Allen the sudden blow has been devastating, having just found what she says was some level of certainty.

"I'm still in a state of anxiety and trauma, I can't get in anywhere," she said.

"All I've been given is phone number after phone number after phone number for help and support.

"To be quite honest, as much as the system purports to help I feel shamed each time, like 'you haven't fallen far enough, you're not homeless enough'."

Today she has been asked to leave. Picture: Jerad Williams
Today she has been asked to leave. Picture: Jerad Williams

A City spokeswoman declined to comment on Ms Allen's situation.

"Due to the return of recreational travel at Tourist Parks, general park amenities will be closed from 13 June in line with requirements under State Government's Health Management Plan for accommodation providers," she said.

"The City will not comment on individual travellers due to privacy reasons, however those who do not meet COVID-19 requirements to stay have been provided with alternate options."

*For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.

Originally published as 'Living in fear': Coast woman homeless over COVID rules


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