CHP State Budget Analysis: Some welcome initiatives but no housing

The Victorian State Budget 2018-19 was released today and included a suite of investments that will improve life outcomes and opportunities for vulnerable Victorians.
We’ve been busy combing through the Budget papers to see what additional funding has been committed to homelessness and housing initiatives. We’ve created this matrix which compares what CHP asked for in its Pre-Budget Submission with what was actually handed down in the Budget today. 

The following important initiatives were announced today:

The Budget also confirmed the commitments in Victoria’s Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan announced in January this year. These include funding for:

  • 20 one-bedroom modular units with intensive onsite support ($2.2 million units; $2.6 million support over 2 years)
  • multidisciplinary housing teams to support complex clients through assertive outreach ($19 million for outreach teams over 4 years (announced in earlier $109m package); and $9 million for ongoing support teams over 2 years
  • three accommodation projects ($8.2 million over 4 years); and 
  • continuation of family violence head-leasing of properties.

Other commitments relevant to CHP’s State Budget asks included:

  • $1.3 million for additional family violence crisis properties in the Wimmera South Mallee
  • $0.3 million to develop a Housing First model suitable for the Central Highlands
  • $43.8 million to expand the Navigator Program that provides support to re-engage young people at risk of disengaging from school

There were no additional commitments to new social housing.

The previous significant social housing commitments made in previous budgets are still being rolled out. However, even with these projects in the pipeline, Victoria’s social housing stock is on the decline when measured as a proportion of all housing, because Victoria’s population has been growing rapidly.

This decline in social housing is shown most clearly in the graph below. 


Responses from the social services sector have been broad. Below is a selection of media releases from organisations that work with vulnerable Victorians:

CHP will continue to work with the sector and all levels of Government to advocate for the housing and support needed to end homelessness, including to call for further investments prior to the election, and for commitments to new programs in party platforms.