Rough sleepers, young people and victims of domestic violence at risk of becoming homeless will receive tailored support to find stability and improve their lives under the NSW Government’s Homelessness Strategy.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Minister for Family and Community Services and Social Housing Pru Goward said the NSW Budget 2018 commits $1 billion for homelessness services over the next four years to support new and existing initiatives.
“The NSW Government is investing $1 billion to support people experiencing homelessness by helping to break the cycle of disadvantage, giving people choices and restoring their dignity to ensure they live happier and more secure lives,” Ms Berejiklian said.
That includes $61 million in new funding over the next four years to implement the Homelessness Strategy, with more assertive outreach services for rough sleepers, strengthened risk assessment to address the underlying complexity behind each person’s homelessness and more support to maintain a tenancy.
“Our Homelessness Strategy will ensure we are supporting people early to prevent homelessness, reaching out to rough sleepers proactively to get them housed and addressing complex issues such as mental health and drug and alcohol abuse,” Ms Berejiklian said.
Mr Perrottet said the Budget commits $20 million over four years to a Social Impact Investment on homelessness.
Social Impact Investments are an innovative way to find solutions to problems like homelessness, tapping into the expertise in the private and not-for-profit sectors to come up with new effective programs.
“Homelessness is not just a housing problem, and this Government is building a system that is able to prevent and respond more effectively to the complex underlying causes that lead to someone sleeping rough,” Mr Perrottet said.
Ms Goward said assertive outreach work has already supported more than 220 rough sleepers from the inner city to be permanently housed.
“We will continue to be proactive in the way we engage and build trust and relationships with people sleeping rough. We know we cannot rely on people coming to us – we have to go to them,” Ms Goward said.
“I am also delighted that we can expand Staying Home Leaving Violence - a proven program that enables victims of domestic violence to remain in their home while the perpetrator is removed.”
The new funding over four years includes:
- $20 million for homelessness social impact investment
- $10.6 million for sustaining tenancies support, by addressing complex needs such as mental health and drug and alcohol issues
- $9.1 million for additional transitional accommodation
- $6.9 million for co-located homeless and health services
- $6.2 million to expand Staying Home Leaving Violence program to five new sites
- $4.7 million for universal risk screening and supports to respond early to young people at risk
- $3.8 million for assertive outreach to proactively support rough sleepers