9 December 2016
Twelve month funding extension a welcome first step, but still a long way to go in turning around rising homelessness and family violence in Australia
A national campaign that mobilised over 200 community organisations and 40,000 individuals to lobby the Prime Minister in support of homelessness and family violence services has welcomed today’s announcement that the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness will be extended for 12 months with some indexation.
CHP CEO and Homelessness Australia Chairperson, Jenny Smith, said “Today’s $117 million announcement is a credit to everyone who supported the Save NPAH Campaign and an acknowledgement that the Federal Government still has an important role to play with states and territories in combating rising homelessness and family violence in Australia.”
“A 12-month extension for 180 critically important services means that 80,000 Australians experiencing crisis related to homelessness and family violence will be supported. That is good news and I welcome Minister Porter’s recommitment to the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness.”
“Funding and policy uncertainty is harmful to services and undermines the effectiveness of our service system. We now have about 18 months to get this right and put in place a new national strategy that addresses both homelessness support services and access to affordable housing.
National Shelter CEO, Adrian Pisarski, said “the indexation of this additional funding is very welcome because lack of indexation has been a major challenge for the housing and homelessness sector over many years. Without indexation, the real value of funding decreases each year and it is the quality of services that suffers as organisations have to do more with less all the time.”
“Despite today’s good news, we could easily find ourselves back in the same place a year from now if the Federal Government doesn’t take this opportunity to start working with the sector to develop a new national strategy that bridges affordable housing, homelessness support and family violence. Kicking the policy can down the road isn’t going to get people off the streets and keep them safe in the long run.
“We’ll be seeking a meeting with Prime Minister Turnbull to discuss how we can move quickly to achieve a longer term solution.”
To learn more about the campaign, please visit the Save NPAH website.
Please see links below for further media coverage:
ABC News Online: Federal Government extends funding for homelessness services ahead of Canberra meeting
The Guardian: COAG agenda: Turnbull gives ground on homelessness and family violence
The Age: Malcolm Turnbull gives reprieve for family violence, homelessness services
The Australian: Turnbull’s COAG funding deal to deliver $117m for homeless
The Conversation: Law to be strengthened on family violence
SBS: Premiers seeking Christmas gifts from PM