Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Teaming up to tackle youth homelessness

Joint Media Release with:

    Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
    Minister for Disability Reform

    Minister for Housing and Homelessness
    Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development
    Minister for Community Services
    Minister for the Status of Women

Federal Labor and the Australian Football League have teamed up to tackle youth homelessness with the Australian Government providing a $960,000 funding boost to Ladder – a non-profit organisation that helps young people live independently.

The Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin announced the new funding at today’s Geelong vs Melbourne clash at Simmonds Stadium.

Ladder does vital work helping vulnerable young people become independent and break the cycle of homelessness.

As well as securing independent accommodation, Ladder links young people aged 16-25 with AFL players and other elite athletes acting as youth mentors and advocates. Their work can include providing fitness sessions, personal development, or simply just being a friend to talk to.

Ladder also links young people with local education, training and employment opportunities.

This new investment, delivered as part of the Government’s National Homelessness Strategy, will support Ladder through to June 2015 and is on top of $480,000 the Government has provided to Ladder since 2011.

This additional funding means Ladder and the AFL can continue this good work throughout Melbourne and Adelaide, and expand their program to Geelong and Perth.

Across these four regions, Ladder will provide ongoing support to about 75 vulnerable young people each year.

Federal Labor is committed to halving the rate of homelessness and providing supported accommodation to all rough sleepers who seek it by 2020.

We have made unprecedented investments to help make housing more affordable and assist people at risk of homelessness.

Through the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness, we are working with the states and territories, business and community organisations to reduce homelessness.

All states and territories have committed to a transitional agreement for 2013-14, worth nearly $320 million in joint federal and state and territory funding.

This will enable critical homelessness services to continue while a further long-term response to homelessness in negotiated.

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