A $17 Million Boost to Help Tackle Homelessness in Canberra
The Federal Labor Government and the ACT Government will invest almost $17 million of joint capital and recurrent funding to provide long-term, stable accommodation and support services to Canberrans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
Federal Minister for Housing and Homelessness Julie Collins and ACT Minister for Housing Shane Rattenbury announced the funding today during a visit to Our Place, a youth accommodation service in Canberra.
“I’m pleased that the ACT Government has signed up to the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness for 2013-14 and is also receiving capital project funding through our $43 million Development Fund,” Ms Collins said.
“This joint funding injection will support seven existing homelessness services and build a new housing facility in Gungahlin for some of Canberra’s most vulnerable people.”
Mr Rattenbury said the funding would help provide affordable housing and critical pathways out of homelessness for Canberrans in need.
“Once completed in December 2014, the Gungahlin Common Ground facility will provide homes for 40 individuals and couples.
“The Common Ground model helps to break the cycle of homelessness by combining a safe, sustainable home, with the support services people need to get back on their feet in the long term.
“Support will be targeted to people’s needs to help them address some of the underlying issues that can cause homelessness, such as mental illness, substance abuse, family breakdown and unemployment.”
Federal Member for Fraser Andrew Leigh said he was very pleased the complex had got the green light.
“There are no more passionate campaigners for social justice than those who’ve pushed for Common Ground Canberra, and it’s an honour to have worked with them over the past few years to finally make this happen,” Mr Leigh said.
“Close to shops, public transport and community facilities, the new complex will house a mix of people who will receive support to ensure they can keep their homes and get their lives in order.”
Ms Collins said the Federal Labor Government remained steadfast in its commitment to halve the rate of homelessness and provide supported accommodation to all rough sleepers who seek it by 2020.
“Through the transitional $320 million National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness, we are working with the states and territories, businesses and community organisations to jointly reduce homelessness,” Ms Collins said.
“This will ensure critical services continue, as we work toward a longer-term response to homelessness.”
Since coming to office in 2007, the Federal Labor Government has invested a record $31 billion to help make housing more affordable and assist people to move out of homelessness.