More Must Be Done - WA Homeless Conference Told
28 May 2012 at 4:42 pm
Federal Minister Brendan O'Connor.
Despite some progress being made, more needs to be done to reduce and prevent homelessness, the Federal Minister for Housing and Homelessness, Brendan O'Connor, has told a West Australian conference.
Homelessness service providers and peak bodies from across Western Australia are attending the Leading the Road Home conference to share experiences and ideas in Perth.
Minister O'Connor said the conference provided an ideal opportunity to examine the progress made to reduce homelessness across the state and to discuss future opportunities.
"We need all levels of government, the community and business sectors to work together to do all we can to support vulnerable Australians and break the cycle of homelessness," O’Connor said.
The conference was funded by the Gillard Government under the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness.
Under the partnership, the Australian and Western Australian Governments will invest $135.16 million to deliver 18 new or expanded homelessness initiatives across the state.
"Homelessness is a complex issue, and the Gillard Government has made it a top priority," O'Connor said.
"Our investment in Western Australia has led to more than 2,900 assistances to people experiencing or at risk of homelessness in 2010-11.
"That includes 68 homes under A Place to Call Home, which provides long term housing for people who are homeless," the Minister said.
Other Gillard Government investment in Western Australia includes:
* $2.24 million in 2011-12 for Reconnect, a program which helps young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness with work, education and training; and
* $590 million under the Social Housing Initiative to build almost 2,100 new homes and carry out repairs and maintenance to almost 10,500 existing homes.