Implementation of the White Paper: The Road Home: A National Approach to Reducing Homelessness in Queensland
The Queensland Context
the second highest number of homeless people (26,782) are homeless – the second highest number in Australia
19% (5,089) of these people experience primary homelessness (rough sleeping)
(ABS, 2006 Census).
The Homelessness National Partnership Agreement
The interim targets of the Homelessness National Partnership Agreement mean:
1,875 fewer Queenslanders who are homeless;
805 fewer Indigenous Queenslanders who are homeless; and
1,272 fewer rough sleepers in Queensland.
And under the Remote Indigenous Housing National Partnership, a reduction of 153 Indigenous Queenslanders who are homeless in remote communities
The Homelessness National Partnership Agreement
The Commonwealth is contributing $99.39 million over four years from 2009‑10 to reduce homelessness though the Homelessness National Partnership Agreement (in addition to the existing bilateral agreement relating to A Place to Call Home).
The State Government is to match this funding
Reducing Homelessness in Queensland – the Foundations
The implementation of the White Paper in Queensland will build on the foundations established through the:
The Responding to Homelessness Initiative - $235million over 4 years (2005-09)
established a range of new and innovative services to assist people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
The One Social Housing System
provides a needs-based allocation system for social housing targeted at individuals and families at most risk, particularly those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
The Queensland Compact
sets out expectations and commitments for the Queensland Government and the non-profit Community Services Sector to work together to benefit the community
Reducing Homelessness in Queensland – a new approach
The new approach to reducing homelessness aims to:
Address the blockages in the current system to enable people to be placed in stable accommodation quickly;
Provide flexible, tailored support that is matched to individuals’ needs for the intensity and duration that the client requires it;
Fill gaps in the existing service system to enable a continuum of response from prevention, early intervention, crisis, transitional and mainstream services;
Promote shared responsibility for identifying and addressing homelessness through mainstream, and specialist homelessness services;
Integrate services, including co-ordinated policies, planning, delivery and case management; and
Maximise efficiency and effectiveness of services and improved systems.
Reducing Homelessness in Queensland - a new approach
In Queensland, the new national directions provide an opportunity to:
Realign policy and program objectives to focus on reducing homelessness.
Free up crisis accommodation by moving people to longer term accommodation
Provide intensive supportive accommodation for the chronically homeless to end their homelessness permanently.
Provide a continuum of support for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness through tenancy support programs and flexible tenancy management models.
Assist young people to transition to independent living through the right mix of support and accommodation (where it is not appropriate for the young person to reconnect with family).
Improve transitional planning and post care support for people exiting corrective service, juvenile justice and health facilities and young people exiting out of home care.
Improve service co-ordination and integration through regional level co-ordination
Provide local solutions to local issues through community wide planning.
Utilise the increase in social housing provision to place more people directly into stable accommodation
How can this be achieved - The Nation Building and Jobs Plan
The Nation Building and Jobs Plan (Economic Stimulus Package) provides an unprecedented opportunity to address the blockages in the current homelessness service system
Queensland can expect to receive almost $1.3 billion over 3 years based on its per capita share of the national funding.
This will allow the addition of up to 4,000 new dwellings to the Queensland social housing portfolio
Opportunities - The Nation Building and Jobs Plan (cont.)
Funding for Queensland will made available in two stages:
Commonwealth has offered $138 million for construction of dwellings which must be completed by 30 June 2010.
Commonwealth has offered funding of $1.06 billion for construction of new dwellings between 2009/10 – 2011/12, with 75% to be completed by December 2010.
Opportunities – new Departmental arrangements
The new departmental arrangements after the recent State election have resulted in 23 stand-alone government departments streamlined into 13.
As part of these new arrangements the Department of Communities incorporates community and youth justice, housing and homelessness, child safety, disability, Indigenous and sport and recreation functions.
This represents an opportunity to provide joined-up government responses and better integrate front line services through place based responses.
These arrangements mirror those at the national level – the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs - providing an opportunity to better integrate and align homelessness responses across levels of Government.
Opportunities – Collaboration and co-operation
Reducing homelessness in Queensland will require the continued support and involvement of the non-government sector including peak bodies, statewide networks and service delivery agencies
The Queensland Government is committed to the principles outlined in the Queensland Compact
The non-government sector has been involved in the identification of priorities and development of an implementation plan for the Homelessness National Partnership Agreement through a joint Homelessness Reform Working Group
State Government and Commonwealth endorsement for an implementation plan for the Homelessness National Partnership Agreement
Development of a workplan to deliver the national reforms identified in the White Paper – monitored by Housing Ministers and by the COAG Reform Council
Review of the Queensland Homelessness Policy Statement
Establish governance arrangements to oversee implementation arrangements including an ongoing engagement strategy with the NGO sector