Media Release by The Hon Brendan O’Connor MP

Rapid rehousing helps break the cycle of homelessness

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon David Bradbury MP Assistant Treasurer Member for Lindsay

A Rapid Rehousing project launched today will help 180 people secure long-term housing in Penrith, Mount Druitt and Coffs Harbour with the help of a $1 million Gillard Government investment.

Minister for Housing and Homelessness Brendan O’Connor and the Federal Member for Lindsay, David Bradbury, said the Rapid Rehousing initiative helped people into longer-term stable housing through personal, targeted support.

“If you don’t have a rental history, references, or even a current address, signing a lease in the private rental market can seem impossible,” Mr Bradbury said today at the official launch at Housing NSW in Penrith.

“This project is about much more than giving people a key and sending them on their way -it’s about empowering the most vulnerable people to get a home, and to keep it for the long term.

“With a particular focus on Aboriginal people and single parents, St Vincent de Paul Society here in Penrith will help repeat users of crisis accommodation secure a lease, and access rent assistance or a no-interest loan.

“We are helping people get their lives back on track and find a long-term home by linking them to support services, such as financial counselling, referrals to employment agencies or Homecare, drug and alcohol services, mental health services or parenting support.

“The services will also provide early intervention to help people at risk of losing their home.”

Mr O’Connor said the project was a great example of how working together could help break the cycle of homelessness.

“A joint effort between the Federal Government, the New South Wales Government and not-for-profit organisations, this project will help tackle homelessness in priority locations including Penrith,” Mr O’Connor said.

“We believe all Australians deserve a safe, secure home, and we will continue to work to provide affordable housing for Australia’s most vulnerable people.

“We have invested an unprecedented $20 billion in housing and homelessness services and programs since 2007.

“In fact, we have made a direct financial contribution to one in every 20 homes built around the nation since 2008.

“I am pleased that my State and Territory colleagues have agreed in principle to negotiate a new long-term partnership on homelessness, with interim funding to keep services open when the current agreement expires at the end of this financial year.”