CHP eNews 3 May State Budget wrap-up

CHP eNews 2018
3 May 2018

Dear *|FNAME|*,

State Budget Wrap-up

Yesterday’s State Budget 2018-19 included a suite of investments that will improve life outcomes and opportunities for vulnerable Victorians, including investment in skills and training, mental health and AOD services and commitments to support vulnerable families.

But what was in it for housing and homelessness, you ask? For those who missed it, we distributed this State Budget analysis yesterday, and also created this matrix which compares what CHP asked for in its Pre-Budget Submission with what was actually handed down in the Budget. 

In overview, the Budget confirmed the commitments in Victoria’s Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan announced in January this year, and unveiled new funding for 

  • $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. Read CHP’s media release: State Budget falls short in boosting low-cost housing

The previous significant social housing commitments made in previous budgets are still being rolled out, and are expected to deliver around 6,000 social housing properties over the next five years.

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 this graph:


 Anglicare rental affordability snapshot

Anglicare Australia’s latest Rental Affordability Snapshot was released on Monday, surveying more than 67,000 rental listings across the country. The report examined all the properties listed for rent on on a particular day and assessed whether each property was affordable and suitable for 14 types of households on a low income.

Out the 67,365 rental properties surveyed, only 180 were affordable for a single person on the Disability Support Pension (0.72 per cent). For those on Newstart, 180 were affordable for a single parent with one child (0.27 per cent), and only three rentals were affordable for a single person (less than 0.01 per cent). If we needed any further evidence that the private rental market has entirely locked out low-income earners, then the #rentalsnapshot2018 delivers it in spades. Australia’s housing system is broken, and the demand  for affordable and social housing is outstripping supply. The Everybody’s Home campaign proposes five steps the Federal Government can take to bring the system back into balance. Sign on today to support this important movement.


One and two bedroom rental affordability hits rock-bottom
Our analysis of the latest DHHS rent report shows that one and two bedroom rental affordability has fallen to crisis levels. During the December quarter just 21 one-bedroom rentals were affordable to a Newstart recipient compared to ten years ago when there were six times as many one-bedders affordable to a Newstart recipient.

The analysis shows that areas that once had an abundance of affordable one and two bedroom rentals now only offer a handful, or, in some cases, zero affordable options. Geelong, Dandenong, Frankston, Brimbank, Knox and Wyndham were the areas that saw the greatest decline in the number of affordable two-bedroom rentals, as renters surge to the outer-suburbs seeking haven from the high rents, pushing up prices. Read the ABC’s report Melbourne’s once-cheap suburbs no longer affordable, which features an interactive map – hours of fun!

Discharged from psych care into homeless
New AIHW data reveals that 1,356 Australians left a psychiatric hospital and became homeless last financial year. The number has risen 16% in two years. A lack of affordable, appropriate housing means that too often people leaving these facilities can only afford to stay in rooming houses or crisis accommodation, where they don’t get the support they need to continue recovery.

In our State Budget submission we called for more dedicated accommodation for people discharged from acute mental health facilities, with wraparound support to help them in their recovery and to stay housed. The $40 million investment would create a mix of single and family units.
A cheap motel room or a dodgy rooming house is a recipe for disaster following a mental health episode. Without a safe, stable home, recovery from a mental health episode is virtually impossible. Any gains achieved in hospital quickly unravel when patients are exited into homelessness. We can turn off the tap of homelessness by providing the right kind of supported housing for this vulnerable cohort. 

The Sunday Age examined this growing trend in this article More go straight from psychiatric hospital into homelessness



How to talk about the economy
If you work in a communications or advocacy role in the non-profit sector, no doubt your job sometimes involves developing persuasive messaging around the economy. 

New research from Australian Progress illuminates how Australian voters respond to different economic language and messaging tactics.
 The findings were presented last month at ‘How to talk about economics: a guide to changing the story’ in packed-out rooms in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. 

The research delivered some surprising results that communicators might find particularly useful during the current post-state and pre-federal budget phase. 
Messaging guides and research results have now been released and are available to download here

They include:

  • the key insights into how people reason about the economy,
  • detailed analysis of the key narrative and language shifts that move persuadable audiences toward progressive policy and,
  • a guide to the research process

We strongly recommend anyone with an interest in talking about money, big business and social change to check out the research.   

  Policy Matters: Exploring the Australian Homelessness Monitor

Launch Housing will host a deep-dive briefing at the State Library Victoria where the researchers will guide you through the Australian Homelessness Monitor.

Date: Monday 14 May
Briefing and Q&A: 3:30-5pm
Drinks and light nibbles: 5-6pm
Venue: State Library of Victoria, Experimedia Room
RSVP here

Launch Housing CEO Tony Keenan
Professor Hal Pawson, University of New South Wales 
Dr Cameron Parsell, University of Queensland

Allison McClelland, former Productivity Commissioner
Dr Andrew Hollows, Exec General Manager- Research, Policy and Service Development, Launch Housing 

What is the Australian Homelessness Monitor?

  • The Australian Homelessness Monitor 2018 (the Monitor) tracks key data about homelessness and the causes of homelessness.
  • The new, independent data will set a benchmark for action to address Australia’s housing crisis.
  • This Monitor brings together the key data policy makers need to make sure all Australians have safe and secure housing.
  • The first step to addressing homelessness is to define the problem and key statistics. The Monitor will track the changes in rates of homelessness over time.


  Early Bird Registration – one month to go!
National Homelessness Conference 2018

AHURI and Homelessness Australia are partnering to convene a National Homelessness Conference 2018 in Melbourne. Learn more on the website

Date: 6 and 7 August 2018
Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground
Cost: Early Bird rates $418 for one day; $770 for two days
Register now for early bird prices

Finland has effectively ended homelessness. To find out how, come and hear newly announced keynote speaker for the conference, Juha Kaakinen, Chief Executive Officer of Y-Foundation. Y-Foundation is the biggest Finnish NGO acquiring flats from the private market for homeless people and providing social housing.

Session highlight – Exiting into homelessness

This session will examine what needs to be done to stop the revolving door between government institutions and homelessness. The session highlights the high risk of homelessness people leaving state care face without the safety net of secure supported housing. Presentations in this session include Paul McDonald, Chair of Homestretch and Dr Olav Nielssen, from the University of Sydney.


Could you live on $278 per week? It’s time to #RaiseTheRate 

Australia’s unemployment and student income support payments are so low that people trying to get by on them go without food, proper shelter and healthcare. The last time they were increased above CPI was in 1994, almost a quarter of a century ago. Back then, a loaf of bread only cost $1.67! You can see in the graph below that the red line (Newstart) has flatlined, while other wages have grown.
In a wealthy country like Australia, people who need these payments because they have lost their jobs or are studying should not be forced to live in destitutionThat is why ACOSS are calling on the federal government to Raise the Rate.   



Online now: April Edition of Parity


To read the edition online, simply log in to the CHP Members Portal and check out the Parity archive


Get full access to Parity – become a subscriber

For complete access to every new addition of Parity, and to a 13-year back-catalogue, simply register as a New User on the CHP Member Portal and choose your subscription type. Note: If you work for a CHP member organisation you can access Parity free online once you activate your staff login to the Portal. Your CEO will send a link that enables you to login.


In the news – in case you missed it!

CHP Updates


Politicians share their top tips for engaging a local MP
As we move toward the 2018 Victorian Election, CHP is developing resources to help you to meet with politicians and tell them what is needed to end homelessness in Victoria.
We invited MP’s to our recent campaign training and election events around the state. Member for Eltham, Vicki Ward; Member for Northern Victoria, Luke O’Sullivan and Member for Ivanhoe, Anthony Carbines generously offered their advice on how to get great outcomes from your Member of Parliament.

A few common themes from our new friends in Parliament were:

  • Know your ask. Come to the meeting knowing the solution to the problem you’ve identified, and what you’d like them to do. They told us: remember that they are generalists across all issues in the community – they rely on you to be the expert in how to end homelessness.
  • Make it a conversation not a monologue. Your local MP has a wealth of connections and knowledge that can help your issue. While you should have a clear ask of them; also ask open questions like – is this an issue often raised with you; what do you think needs to be done; how can you help us win this important reform/funding outcome; who else do you think we should be speaking to?
  • Send some information beforehand – and keep it brief. If you can send through a one page backgrounder outlining what the meeting is about, and what solutions you are proposing, your MP will come to the meeting better informed, and having had a chance to consider the issue.
  • Ask them to write on your behalf to the Minister or public servant who can fix the problem. An MP’s letterhead is extremely powerful, and ensures that your matter gets fully considered. If you find that you’re getting responses that just direct you to existing policy rather than responding to what you need, your MP may be able to help.
  • Remember that your relationship with your MP is good for them too. Just like you want help to get funding or legislative reform for real solutions to homelessness, they want your insights into what is happening in their local communities, and how you might be able to help anybody who walks into their office needing homeless help. They’re as keen to build this relationship as you are.

As CHP works to develop a Victorian Homelessness Sector Election Platform, these sessions were a fantastic opportunity to ensure that our sector has the skills that we need to advocate on our own behalf and ask our politicians to fund and legislate the solutions we need.

Tell us about your MP 

 If you’ve met with your MP in the last 18 months, or if you do so in the lead up to the election, CHP would love to hear from you! As we work to support the sector to achieve strong commitments from all Victorian political parties on ending homelessness, it helps us to know who you’ve met and how it went, in order to get an idea of how well we’re tracking as a sector. Let us know at

Victorian Homelessness Sector Election Platform – Watch this space

CHP will be developing a Victorian Homelessness Sector Election Platform for the 2018 Victorian Election, which will be held on 24 November.

We’re determined that the Election Platform should not just be for CHP, but for all of our members. We’re attending meetings through April and May to get your input. If you missed out, or if you have more to say, never fear – a survey will be sent around in coming weeks.
We want this election platform to be reflective of the broad range of needs from around the state, so drop us a line to let us know what you think needs to be included. 

Save the Date! Parity launch event

The next edition of Parity magazine: “Revisiting Rough Sleeping” will be launched on the 15 June at Port Melbourne Town Hall.
We’re delighted to announce that the Victorian Minister for Housing, the Hon. Martin Foley MP will be launching this important edition, with other speakers to be confirmed closer to the date. RSVP today

May Parity: Call for contributions

The May 2018 “Revisiting Rough Sleeping”

Rough sleeping has become an increasingly visible form of homelessness in Australia in recent years, especially in major cities, resulting in a heightened public awareness of the issue, and in a range of media and policy responses to it.

Alongside the growth in the prevalence of rough sleeping, there has been an increasing convergence of international evidence and practice around effective responses to chronic homelessness. This evidence base has had clear implications for the response to rough sleeping. This body of evidence, called Housing First, focusses on the primacy of housing in response efforts, alongside flexible wrap-around support provided within a rights framework.

Contributions close Friday May 11 2018Download the flyer here
Subscribe to Parity here.

June Parity: Call for contributions

The June 2018 “Responding to Older Persons Homeless: What Works?”

This edition of Parity is about the nexus between homelessness and aged care. Arguably, most people as they inevitably grow older will require some form of aged care. This is true whether they are homeless or not. However, the reality is that the current aged care system is designed for those with property and assets. It does not work for the impoverished, and especially not for the homeless or those at risk of homelessness.

The twin aims of this edition are:

  • To discuss the changes that are required in the social welfare system, including income support, health, housing, homelessness and especially aged care, so that all sectors work and operate to prevent older persons becoming homeless and meet the housing and support needs of impoverished older people without housing security and those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
  • To examine and discuss those models of housing and support that actually work to meet the specific needs of older disadvantaged and impoverished older Australians.

Contributions close Friday 8 June 2018Download the flyer here
Subscribe to Parity here.

If you have any questions about contributing to Parity please contact the Parity Editor or ring 03 8415 6201



Held ‘under the spire’ at the iconic Arts Centre Melbourne, the VCOSS Summit on 13 June will bring together leaders, strategic thinkers and workers in the community sector, government, academia and business to explore a vision for a new Victoria.

Speakers include the Victorian Premier, Leader of the Opposition; Leader of the Victorian Greens and many more

Early bird ending this Friday. 

Register now.
When: 13 June

Nominations for the 2018 Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are open 


The annual Victorian Senior of the Year Awards are run by the Victorian Government. They acknowledge older Victorians who volunteer their time to assist, support and encourage others in their communities..

The award categories are:
·        Premier’s Award for Victorian Senior of the Year
·        Healthy Active Living Award
·        Veterans Community Award
·        Promotion of Multiculturalism Award
·        COTA Victoria Senior Achiever Awards
·        Age-Friendly Victoria Award – for organisations or businesses.
The nomination period for the Awards is now open and closes on July 20, 2018.
Nomination forms can be downloaded here

For further information about the nomination process please contact Melanie Edge on 9096 1020 or

Become a CHP Member
Becoming a CHP member is the most effective way to support Council to Homeless Persons’ work to end homelessness.




Improving Access to the NDIS training

CHP will deliver “Improving Access to the NDIS training” across Victoria over the coming months, providing frontline homelessness practitioners with the skills and knowledge to knowledge to improve the access of their clients to the NDIS.
Content for the sessions will be drawn from the “Homelessness and the National Disability Insurance Scheme: Challenges and solutions” report available on the Council to Homeless Person’s website.

Two sessions have been announced:
Central Highlands on the 9 May and Eastern Melbourne on the 14 May.
More dates to be announced shortly.
Registration for Central Highlands
Registration for Melbourne East

SHS Training Calendar
Download the Specialist Homelessness Sector training calendar February-June here.

Do Food Safely – online food safety resource
DHHS has recently updated its online learning resource DoFoodSafely.The free, non-accredited online learning resource enables people to understand how to safely work with food.
The course is not accredited as the department is not a registered training organisation. However, if the user successfully completes the assessment they will receive a certificate of completion. This can be useful for job seekers wishing to work in hospitality.
Additionally, volunteers and staff may find the program helpful as a learning or teaching resource.

Responding to Sexual Assault: 1-day workshop
Up to 1 in 3 women and 1 in 6 men will experience sexual assault at some time in their lives. Given these statistics, it is likely that anyone working in health or human services will at some time work with people affected by sexual assault.
Date: 25 July 2018
9.30 – 4.30
RSVP via the registration form or email Email for more info.

FREE Ice Training
360Edge is delivering FREE Ice Training to frontline workers across Victoria in health, welfare, education and transport sectors, funded by the Victorian Government as part of the Ice Action Plan. These practical interactive workshops build the knowledge and skills of frontline workers to respond safely and effectively to people affected by ice.       
Date: 11 May
Time: 1 – 4pm
Venue: Western Victoria PHN 131 Myers Street Geelong
More info here.

Foundation of Trauma-Informed Care and Practice (Level 1)
Builds awareness around the possibility of trauma affecting the people you support and work with, and provides the knowledge and skills to minimise re-traumatisation and enhance possibilities for recovery.
Date: 18 May
Early Bird ends 23 March.
Introduction to Working Therapeutically with Complex Trauma Clients (Level 1)
Workshops the three-phases of working clinically with complex trauma clients, and fosters insights, tools and strategies for safe therapeutic alliances, informed by best practice principles.
Fri 15 Jun 2018, Melbourne – Early Bird ends 20 Apr 2018.

SmartSafe: Digital Safety, Family Violence and Risk Assessment
Do you understand the latest smartphones, social media channels, GPS tracking and communications technology?
If you work in family violence, you need to understand how technology is used in family violence, and what you can do in your role to support the 98% of victim/survivors who are experiencing tech-facilitated abuse. Proficiency in technology is not required, only a passion for keeping women and children safe.
Frankston: 8 May
Melbourne CBD: 24 May
Dandenong: 14 June
More info


Case Notes, Family Violence and the Law
This program explains the importance of case notes in day-to-day family violence practice and legal processes. The course includes models for taking case notes, writing style, and content, legal issues, privacy and confidentiality, responding to subpoena, being a witness and writing reports for court.
Darebin: 9 May
Traralgon: 23 May
Ringwood: 5 June
Dandenong: 28 June
More info

Common Risk Assessment Framework (CRAF)
The Common Risk Assessment Framework (CRAF) helps professionals identify and respond to family violence risk factors. It was developed in consultation with Victorian family violence service providers, police and courts and based upon international research. It is the basis of the family violence service system in Victoria and provides a common language and shared understanding for all agencies to talk about risk assessment and the issues underpinning family violence.

CRAF Risk Assessment (Practice Guide 2)
This course assists professionals who work with victims of family violence and play a role in initial risk assessment, but for whom responses to family violence are not their only core business.
Learn more

CRAF Specialist Training (Practice Guide 3)
This course is aimed at family violence professionals who work with women and children who are victims of family violence.
Learn more

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