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Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Federal Government committed to helping families in crisis

Helping families in crisis is a key priority for the Federal Government,” Minister for Community Services Larry Anthony said today.

Commenting on the Report Accompanying Children by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Mr Anthony said the Government is serious about the problem of homelessness among children and has taken a number of steps to address this problem.

“The Government commissioned this special collection because we have been concerned about improving the assistance given to children accompanying parents to homeless service,” said Mr Anthony.

“Collecting information about families and children in these vulnerable situations is complex and needs to be handled very sensitively – something that Labor’s spokesman Anthony Albanese should remember.

“We have allocated more than $800 million for the next five years, an 18 per cent real increase, to the Supported Accommodation Assistance Program.

“This considerable amount of money is given to the States to use to address this problem, a point that seems lost on Labor and its spokesperson Anthony Albanese.

“With considerable contacts in his own party, Mr Albanese might better serve the homeless by discussing the issue with his NSW State Labor Government colleagues.

“He should know his own state of NSW was the first to sign up to the new SAAP agreement and its increase in funding,” said Mr Anthony.