Women's aid groups in Sudbury are welcoming a new federal investment into women's shelters.

The federal government announced in its budget last week that it will spend almost $90 million over two years on the construction and renovation of facilities for victims of domestic violence.

The director of Centre Victoria pour femmes in Sudbury and Algoma — an agency that provides women's support services — said the funding will go a long way to help support shelters for First Nations women who are too often the victims of violence.  

"We do have to do something about this because the numbers are disproportionately affecting First Nations women, indigenous women, and we need to be addressing that very seriously," Gaetane Pharand said.

Gaetane Pharand

Gaetane Pharand, executive director with Centre Victoria pour femme, says federal funding will go a long way to help support shelters for First Nations women who are too often the victims of violence. (Marina von Stackelberg/CBC)

"It's good news in a sense that we do know that some shelters across Canada are starting to deteriorate. We do need some support in getting them to be much more accessible."

Most federally funded women's shelters were built in the 1970s and 1980s, and many are in need of repair.

She noted not every women's shelter in Canada will get this money, as some shelters are funded by the province, not the federal government.

That means Sudbury's Genevra House will not receive funding, as it is provincially funded.

But the executive director there, Marlene Gorman, said Genevra House could benefit through new partnerships and strategies with federal shelters to better serve indigenous women in the community.

Gorman said more shelters are needed close to First Nations communities and the far north.

The federal government says its investment is expected to support the construction or renovation of more than 3,000 shelter spaces over the next two years.

With files from the CBC's Olivia Stefanovich