QUEBEC CITY -- The housing crisis is not sparing victims of domestic violence, who are often unable to find a home quickly to ensure their safety outside the home.

The Quebec government intends to address this need by building 236 new second-stage housing units for abused women to strengthen the safety net for them.

Second-stage housing provides women with longer stays, often lasting several months, as opposed to shelters designed to provide emergency relief for a short period of time.

It is expected that approximately 50 of these second-stage houses will be built within the year and the remainder within three years.

In addition, women living at the residences will have access to the rent supplement program.

Quebec also wants to expand the network of rapid intervention units for abused women to the entire territory, with priority given to Montreal where they do not exist.

The announcements, which were immediately well-received by the shelter community, were made Friday at a news conference in Quebec City by Municipal Affairs Minister Andree Laforest, Deputy Premier Genevieve Guilbault and Status of Women Minister Isabelle Charest.

They are part of the recently released five-year, $222 million comprehensive action plan to combat violence against women and curb the recent rise in feminicides.

10 feminicides have been reported in Quebec since the beginning of the year.

-- this report by The Canadian Press was first published May 14, 2021.