Media Release by The Hon Mark Butler MP

$159 million for national homelessness agreement

The Australian Government today announced up to $159 million for states and territories to continue vital services that tackle homelessness.

Federal Minister for Housing and Homelessness Mark Butler called on the states to match this funding injection to ensure that service delivery provided under the current National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness continues.

“Service providers need certainty about next year’s funding so that they can continue providing critical support to some of our most vulnerable Australians and this will only be resolved when states and territories sign on to this agreement.”

Mr Butler said that while discussions were well progressed, the time had come for governments to stand up.

“A draft agreement is now with the states and territories for consideration, and I look forward to hearing back from them on their funding commitment.”

“Once negotiations are completed, states and territories will be able to talk to their service providers on future funding arrangements.”

Mr Butler said the one-year transitional agreement for 2013-14 is an important first step as the Government continues to work with the states and territories towards an integrated and holistic response to homelessness beyond 2014.

The Commonwealth has also committed additional support for capital projects that help people move out of homelessness into safe and sustainable housing.

“States and territories will be invited to bid for a portion of the capital fund as part of a competitive process, and will be required to match the Commonwealth investment.”

Mr Butler said achieving real results in reducing homelessness will only be possible through joint responsibility and collaborative action.

“We remain committed to halving the rate of homelessness by 2020 because every Australian deserves a safe and secure home.”