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Queensland Government media release

Queenslanders working in the homelessness sector now have greater job security after the Palaszczuk Government today announced it would lock in five-year funding contracts for specialist service providers.

Speaking at the launch of the Queensland edition of Parity magazine (last week), Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said the funding certainty is a key plank of the Palaszczuk Government’s Partnering for Impact initiative.

“The latest ABS data released this week shows that homelessness has increased in Queensland by 14% in the 5 years from 2011,” Mr de Brenni said.

“Those figures highlight the need for government to work with the housing and homelessness sector to achieve real outcomes for people experiencing homelessness.

“The sector has told me repeatedly that short term and insecure funding has been severely affecting service providers’ ability to develop workforce capacity.

“It was impacting their ability to plan and develop services, and to attract quality staff because they could only employ people for a few months at a time.

“That’s why the Palaszczuk Government, together with organisations like QCOSS and Q Shelter, fought so hard for longer-term funding commitments from the federal government – and it’s a fight we won.

“And my first task under our Partnering for Impact initiative will be to provide each specialist homelessness service a five-year contract from July 2018.”

The Services Union, who with Executive President Jennifer Thomas campaigned for five year funding contracts for community services, welcomed the commitment.

“The Services Union supports the Partnering for Impact approach of the Queensland Government focusing government, sectors and workforce and its representatives on its response to homelessness and housing, including provided improved working conditions for its workforce by implementing 5 year funding contracts to services,” Ms Thomas said.

Mr de Brenni said a key component of the Partnering for Impact initiative was the development of Queensland’s first homelessness Compact.

“The Compact will establish a partnership framework with the sector, where we can move forward together to improve service delivery, to expand the capabilities of the sector, and ensure we deliver person centred housing responses.”

Executive Director of Q Shelter Leone Crayden said the organisation strongly supported the Partnering for Impact initiative and the development of a Compact to drive a shared vision on decreasing homelessness.

“What Q Shelter is extremely excited about is the commitment from the Queensland Government to co-design services, not only with the sector but to work alongside people with lived experience of homelessness,” Ms Crayded said.

“This will lead to authentic person centred services and housing solutions.

“Furthermore the five year funding contracts will now give front line workers in this sector security of tenure and ability to plan for their futures."

Micah Projects CEO Karyn Walsh said Partnering for Impact was music to her ears.

“Government and the sector partnering together is what will allow us to plan better and innovate new ways to achieve real outcomes,” Ms Walsh said.

“The stability and certainty is key to ensuring we move forward together, and partner for real change.”

The Queensland edition of Parity magazine includes more than 50 articles from the homelessness sector spanning the role of Youth Foyers in providing pathways to independence to the important issues of assisting people impacted by domestic and family violence.

Parity magazine makes a valuable contribution to the national discussion of policy and service innovations for addressing homelessness in Australia,” said Mr de Brenni.

“It examines all aspects, including its causes and consequences, policies, programs and services that prevent, respond to and end homelessness,” he said.

“I commend Parity on shining a light on the incredible work that this sector achieves.

“Some of the articles are inspiring, some enlightening, and all contribute to a much-needed conversation – it’s highly recommended reading.”

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