Media Release by The Hon Julie Collins MP

$333,000 for telephone financial counselling in Tasmania

Anglicare Tasmania will receive a $333,000 boost from the Gillard Government to expand its telephone financial counselling services to vulnerable Tasmanians.

The Parliamentary Secretary for Community Services, Julie Collins, today visited Anglicare Tasmania in Hobart to announce the funding, which is part of a $2.2 million investment to improve access to telephone financial counselling nationally.

Ms Collins said the three-year funding arrangement would enable Anglicare Tasmania to expand and enhance its support and reach more locals experiencing financial difficulties.

“Anglicare Tasmania currently provides financial counselling to vulnerable Tasmanians, offering information, advice and referrals,” Ms Collins said.

“The Gillard Government is giving the service a valuable funding boost, as part of our significant investment to help more people benefit from telephone financial counselling across the country.

“Our investment will also fund infrastructure upgrades to ensure the quality of the service.

“It will mean people can ring 1800 007 007 from anywhere in the country for free advice on how to deal with a range of financial matters.”

Ms Collins said telephone financial counselling complements face-to-face services and assists people who are unable to access these services.

“The Gillard Government has invested a further $171.9 million over four years in the recent Budget for emergency relief and financial counselling services, and for innovative projects such as no and low interest loans and matched savings schemes.

“This continues funding for 77 full-time financial counselling positions established during the global financial crisis.

“Financial counsellors provide free, confidential and professional counselling to people experiencing financial difficulties.

“They are critical to helping families, individuals and communities overcome financial crisis situations and get back on their feet.

“I congratulate Anglicare Tasmania and commend them for their ongoing work to help Tasmanians in need.”

People in need of telephone financial counselling can call 1800 007 007 from 9.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.