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1st December 2017     SUPPORT AND SAFETY HUBS STATEWIDE CONCEPT PAPER
by NIFVs

Support and Safety Hubs Statewide Concept Paper


The Statewide Concept for Support and Safety Hubs, was released  recently by the Victorian Government. The Concept outlines design features of the Hubs, including access pathways and key functions.

The next stage will be the development of the practice framework, operational model and management and government structures. These will be informed by statewide and local co-design.

 A local Hub establishment group will be developed in the coming month to establish a launch site in the North-East Melbourne area. more more

29th November 2017     AHURI NATIONAL HOUSING CONFERENCE 2017 PROGRAM
by AHURI

National Housing Conference 2017 program released

AHURI are thrilled to announce that the much anticipated National Housing Conference 2017 program is now available. With more than 1000 delegates and 150 speakers expected to participate in 35 sessions over three days, and with significant political will and public appetite for real reform, #NHCSydney is set to be the most significant Conference in many years. 

Early bird registration extended - to allow you extra time to examine the program they have extended the early bird registration rate by two weeks. Register by 11 August to save over $200.

The Conference will be held from November 29 to 1 December in Sydney. more

5th September 2017     SASHS OPEN HOUSE ORINTATION DATES
by Keith Hunte, SASHS

SASHS hosts an Open House Orientation on the first Tuesday of each month from 10 am – 12.00 pm.

The Open House Orientations provide information on the broad range of programs delivered across the SASHS Network. 

The Open House Orientations are intended for:

· New and existing workers 

· Students 

The Open House Orientation includes the following:

· An overview of each program delivered at SASHS

· Program Resources

· Opportunities to ask questions

· Morning tea more

27th August 2017     PETS IN THE PARK CLINICS: FREE VET SUPPORT FOR PETS OF PEOPLE WHO ARE HOMELESS
by Pets in the Park

The next Pets in the Park Clinic is on 28th May 2017. (See attached flyer for more information).

Pets in the Park looks forward to seeing their regular Pet loving owners and always welcome new faces.

Homelessness includes, rough sleeping, couch surfing, Tenting or caravan, rooming or boarding house, refuge or domestic violence shelter, transitional housing.

Several of our Pet Owners referrals ( valid for 6 months) are out of date, so I shall be following up with referrers to complete a new one.

Please do not worry, no pet will be denied a service if the referral is out of date.  more

4th August 2017     ART EXHIBITION FOR NTH AND WEST MELBOURNE ACTION GROUP
by Nth and West Homelessness Group

The Nth & West Melb Homeless Action Group  are holding workshops leading up to an  art exhibition called "Different Voices - Common Goals" Our first workshop commences today! Just want to invite anyone living, working or has connections to Nth & West Melbourne to come by & contribute towards creating a mural in time for spring fling fest in Oct.

Attached the flyer - kindly pass-on to your networks. It's open to ANYONE - staff/clients/residents/business, etc - within nth & west melb. more

3rd August 2017     A FINANCIAL BLACK HOLE AWAITS ‘GENERATION RENT’ IN RETIREMENT
by Rob Burgess, The New Daily

The deterioration in wealth equality revealed in Tuesday’s HILDA survey should be seen as a crossroads in Australian history – either we continue down the road to inequality, or we fix the problem at its heart.

The highly respected survey showed a property-based class divide emerging due to plummeting home ownership rates in the under-40s.

That means a generation of renters will not accumulate wealth through the family home as their parents did.

That would not be a problem for ‘Generation Rent’ if, after a lifetime of renting, they could still afford a dignified retirement.

But unlike nations such as Germany and France, where renting is the norm, Australia has a welfare and retirement system still predicated on the idea of home ownership.

That’s a huge problem, because on present settings, couples or individuals who have not paid off homes by retirement will be much worse off than those who have.

Access to property ownership is no longer simply determined by hard work and enterprise – increasingly it is determined by the ‘bank of Mum and Dad’ helping the younger generation with a deposit.

A nation that once encouraged its young adults to be economically independent has, through cynical wealth-redistributing policies, forced them back into being dependent on their asset-rich parents – if, that is, they are lucky enough to have them.

The Australian dream of owning a home outright in retirement is fading fast. 
more

2nd August 2017     CALL FOR 100,000 SOCIAL HOUSING BOOST ACROSS AUSTRALIA TO HELP PEOPLE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS
by Council to Homeless Persons

If we’re going to end the housing crisis, we need 100,000 new public and community housing properties targeted to low income earners over the next five years. 30,000 of those properties would be allocated for Victoria, to move the thousands of people off waiting lists into a safe, permanent home. 

There are more than 35,000 people on the Victorian Housing Register awaiting public housing. Private rental is at its lowest rate of affordability ever.  Less than 2% of private rental in Melbourne's north and west is considered affordable for people on low incomes.

Homelessness services in Melbourne's north and west supported nearly 30,000 households in 2015/16, all seeking homelessness support and accommodation.

You can support the call for 100K Homes by signing the petition at  www.endthehousingcrisis.org.au

more

1st August 2017     AUSTRALIA POST FREE 12 MONTH REDIRECTION OF MAIL SERVICE
by Australia Post

Australia Post supports victims of family violence  
Australia Post are providing a free 12 month mail redirection service to support victims of family violence. In terms of eligibility, either a letter from a support agency (on their letterhead) verifying  that the client has satisfied the agency's criteria for experiencing family violence, an intervention order or a statutory declaration from the police will be required   more

1st August 2017     SPECIALIST HOMELESSNESS SECTOR TRAINING CALENDAR AUGUST - DECEMBER 2017
by Wodonga Tafe

Attached is the link to the Specialist Homelessness Sector Calendar Semester 2, 2017.

https://www.wodongatafe.edu.au/Portals/10/About%20Us/Publications/2643_CSH_A4%20Training%20calendar_270717.pdf?ver=2017-07-31-083645-073

More workshops may be offered during the semester. Please refer to the website for the latest course offerings.

All training is open to HSO staff.

All workshops are held from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm in the Melbourne CBD unless otherwise stated.

more

1st August 2017     WALK IN MY SHOES TOURS
by Council for homeless persons

As part of Homelessness Week the Council for Homeless Persons are  organising a couple of PESP Walk in My Shoes Tours (Tues 8th & Wed 9th) that are open to the public.

Please see flier attached, or here. I encourage you to circulate the info below to your networks. People from all sorts of backgrounds would find this activity of interest and benefit – local Government, community services, allied health, Centrelink, Department, Universities etc. more

21st July 2017     CARING DADS PROGRAM IN THE NORTH EAST
by Dr Paul Emerson Teusner

 
Caring Dads is a 17 week voluntary group work program for fathers who have perpetrated family violence.

The program is suited to fathers (including step-fathers) who live in the North East (Yarra, Darebin, Banyule, Nillumbik, Whittlesea LGAs), are in contact with at least one child, where there are concerns about harsh or abusive parenting, including children’s exposure to family violence. Caring Dads is aimed at increasing the safety and wellbeing of children and mothers by assisting fathers to recognise the impact of their abuse on their families, stop that behaviour and improve their parenting.

Caring Dads (North East) will be commencing groups on Thursday 20th of July 2017, 6.30pm-8.30pm at the CPS Heidelberg site (70 Altona Street, Heidelberg Heights) and Thursday 17th August, 11.30am-1.30pm at Neighbourhood Justice Centre (241 Wellington Street, Collingwood) and are open for referrals into these programs. Please see attached flyers and eligibility criteria - feel free to forward these on to your networks. 
 
If you can think of a father who you believe would benefit from this program, please contact the program Co-ordinator Monique Yeoman on 94500997 or 1300938790. 
  more

21st July 2017     PROMOTION OF SAFE SLEEPING ADVICE FOR HOMELESSNESS SECTOR
by Irene Tomasszewski Assistant Director Homelessness and Accommodation Support

Promotion of Safe Sleeping Advice for Homelessness Sector

The Commission for Children and Young People has recommended that homelessness services promote safe sleeping arrangements for infants, and the use of infant safe sleeping resources. This follows a recent child death inquiry and the tragic death of an infant. The purpose of child death inquiries is to promote continuous improvement in child protection and the safety and wellbeing of children and young people.

The department is promoting the use of the following safe sleeping resources and information. Please share this advice with staff providing homelessness support to families and infants.

  more

21st July 2017     WOMEN'S HEALTH WEST COMMUNITY EDUCATION SESSIONS
by Women's Health West

Women's Health West Integrated Family Violence Serivces is offering  community education sessions throughout 2017 for staff from across the community sector to attend.  

These sessions will provide our colleagues across the community sector an overview of the programs offered throughout the FVIS as well as referral pathways and eligibility criteria.  

The session will be held bi-monthly on 4th Tuesday, from May from 2pm-3:30pm at WHW Footscray office, 317-319 Barkly Street Footscray.

lease see attached flyer for further details.

more

27th June 2017     RELEASE OF CENSUS DATA
by Australian Bureau of Statistics

The first and main release of the detailed data from 2016 Census will be released on 27 June 2017.

The June release will include national, state/territory and capital city data with most key person, family and dwelling characteristics, including age, sex, religion, language and income.

Community level Census data, including information on small population groups and for small geographic areas such as suburbs and Local Government Areas will also be available then. 27 June will also show us population growth for Australia and our states and territories when Rebased Estimated Resident Population is also released.

The ABS will build over 80,000 QuickStats to support each of these different areas, as well as over 30,000 different detailed Community Profile workbooks.

NB Unfortunately I think the homelessness data will not be included in the June release (Western Networker).  more

23rd June 2017     WHO’S RESPONSIBLE? HOUSING POLICY MISMATCHED TO OUR $6 TRILLION ASSET
by Prof J Dodson, S Sinclair and T Dalton in The Conversation

Does the Australian government have the policy, organisational and conceptual capacity to handle the country’s A$6 trillion housing stock? We ask this question in a newly released research report. The answer is critically important to both household opportunity and prosperity, and to the management of our largest national asset.

Australians’ wealth is overwhelmingly in our housing. As of late 2016, our housing stock was valued at $6 trillion. That’s nearly double the combined value of ASX capitalisation and superannuation funds.

The authors appraised the Henry Review of Taxation (2010), the National Housing Supply Council report series (2009-2013), the Productivity Commission inquiry into planning (2011), the COAG Report on Housing Supply and Affordability Reform (2012), the Financial System Inquiry (2014), the Federation Report on housing and homelessness (2014), and (albeit not a government report) the Senate Inquiry into housing affordability (2015). 

This report demonstrates weaknesses in Australia’s approach to housing and housing policymaking. There is evidence this is deliberate. For example, the Coalition members’ minority response to the 2015 Senate inquiry into affordable housing rejected almost all of its policy recommendations. Many of these would rectify some of the deficits we have identified.

The weak formal coordination in housing policy contrasts with other sectors such as energy, defence, biosecurity, disability, heritage, drugs and road safety, among others. 

The authors recommend that the Australian government reflects on the position of housing within the architecture of government. The $6 trillion national asset that housing represents deserves much better understanding of its dynamics and effects on the national economy, including productivity.

The authors argue that Australia needs a federal minister for housing, a dedicated housing portfolio, and an agency responsible for conceptualising and co-ordinating policy. The current fragmented, ad-hoc approach to housing policy seems poorly matched to the scale of the housing sector and its importance to Australia. more

23rd June 2017     SUPPORTIVE HOUSING IS CHEAPER THAN CHRONIC HOMELESSNESS
by C Parsell, University of Qld in The Conversation

It costs the state government more to keep a person chronically homeless than it costs to provide permanent supportive housing to end homelessness,  recent research shows.

Over a 12-month period, people who were chronically homeless used state government funded services that cost approximately A$48,217 each. Over another 12-month period in which they were tenants of permanent supportive housing, the same people used state government services that cost approximately A$35,117.

The significance of this cost difference is remarkable. Yes, people use A$13,100 less in government-funded services when securely housed compared to the services they used when they were chronically homeless. But, on top of that, the annual average of A$35,117 in services used by supportive housing tenants includes the A$14,329 cost of providing the housing and support.

When we provide permanent supportive housing, not only do we realise whole of government cost offsets, but the way people live their lives changes demonstrably.

The data show that when people are tenants of supportive housing, their low level criminal behaviour and reliance on crisis health and temporary accommodation services that characterised their lives while homeless reduces. For example, sustaining housing, compared to being homeless for a year, was associated with a 52 per cent reduction in criminal offending, a 54 per cent reduction in being a victim of crime, and 40 per cent reduced time spent in police custody. Their use of short term crisis accommodation reduced by 99 per cent; mental health service used declined by 65 per cent.

When people have access to housing that is safe and affordable, they no longer have to live as patients, criminals, inmates, clients, and homeless people.

Click here for the full article. more

24th May 2017     NEW NATIONAL HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS AGREEMENT AND RECURRENT NPAH FUNDING
by Western Homelessness Networker

The Federal Government has created a new National Housing & Homelessness Agreement, bringing together the former National Affordable Housing Agreement and the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH). 

The NPAH component, that has been rolling over annually for four years will now be funded ongoingly and with indexation.

It is likely that the new Agreement will bring with it significant outcome measures linked to the funding.

For now anyway the homelessness sector can breathe a sigh of relief with some security of funding. However, the new Agreement does not bring with it the much needed growth funds to assist us to respond to the increasing numbers of people presenting to our services who are experiencing homelessness.  

Attached is the summary budget paper outining the new Agreement.  more

24th May 2017     THE INSECURITY OF PRIVATE RENTERS - HOW DO THEY MANAGE IT?
by Alan Morris et al, University of Technology Sydney in The Conversation

A growing proportion of Australian households depend on the private rental sector for accommodation. This growth has occurred despite substantial insecurity of tenure under the law, unlike other countries with high private rental rates, such as Germany.

Our newly published research on the impacts of long-term or even lifelong insecurity on Australian private renters found their responses range from lack of concern to constant fear and anxiety.

Back in the 1990s about one-fifth of us rented our homes from private landlords. Now this has swelled to more than one-quarter.Historically, renting was usually a transitional step in the life cycle. Most people rented for a while and eventually bought a home.

While this housing pathway is still dominant, a growing number of Australians cannot make this transition. At least one in three private renters are long-term private renters (ten years or more). This equates to at least one in 12 households.

Australian households rent accommodation under a regulatory framework that provides little protection against landlord-instigated “forced moves” or untenable rent increases. 

Drawing on 60 in-depth interviews, we explored the impacts of this de jure housing insecurity on long-term private renters in different housing markets (low, medium and high rent, with 20 interviews in each) in Sydney and Melbourne. We identified three typical responses to ongoing insecurity:

  • incessant anxiety and fear;

  • lack of concern; and

  • concern offset to an extent by economic/social capital, with renting sometimes seen as the only means of living in a desired area.

    Click here for the full article.

more

24th May 2017     ESTABLISHMENT OF FAMILY SAFETY VICTORIA
by Victorian Government

As part of a $1.91 billion package of measures in the Victorian Budget 2017/18, $60 million will fund the establishment of Family Safety Victoria, the state’s first-ever agency solely dedicated to delivering family violence reform.

From 1 July, Family Safety Victoria will lead the implementation of new initiatives, including establishing the Central Information Point, which will allow police, courts and government services to track perpetrators and keep victims safe.

The agency will also be responsible for establishing the Centre for Workforce Excellence and 17 Support and Safety Hubs across the state, to give victims the support they need to recover.

The details of Family Safety Victoria and how the Labor Government will deliver $1.91 billion of investment is contained in the Family Violence Rolling Action Plan. The Plan details the next steps in the Labor Government’s 10 Year Agenda to implement every recommendation from Australia’s first Royal Commission into Family Violence.  

Kelly Stanton, currently the General Manager of Services at Wesley Mission Victoria, has been appointed to the position of Executive Director, Hubs and Service Coordination at FSV.  more

24th May 2017     NEW STRUCTURE FOR DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
by DHHS

DHHS will move to a new structure on 3 July, consisting of six Divisions, each headed by a senior deputy secretary:

  • Children, Families, Disability and Operations – Chris Asquini
  • Health and Wellbeing – Terry Symonds
  • Housing, Infrastructure, Sport and Recreation – Nick Foa
  • Regulation, Health Protection and Emergency Management – Melissa Skilbeck
  • Corporate Services – Carolyn de Gois
  • Strategy and Planning – Amity Durham (Acting)

The new structure also includes three portfolio agencies:
Victorian Agency for Health Information – Diane Watson
Safer Care Victoria – Professor Euan Wallace
Family Safety Victoria – Kelly Stanton

  more

Events

2017November
29 AHURI National Housing Conference 2017 Program