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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 5 Hansard (5 April) . . Page.. 1333..


MR HARGREAVES: Sure. I thank Mr Gentleman for allowing me the opportunity to advise the Assembly that, through the development of Breaking the cycle: the ACT homelessness strategy, the Stanhope government has increased funding to address homelessness by 86 per cent. The ACT government now funds 53 crisis medium and long-term supported accommodation and associated support services.

New supported accommodation services similar to the YWCA service at Tuggeranong include services for single men, families and couples, and associated support and outreach services for men, women and young people. Funding for the establishment of family and outreach services for Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders has also been provided.

Other new supported accommodation services funded by the ACT government as part of the homelessness strategy include supported accommodation for 20 single men, six families in west Belconnen, six families in Gungahlin, six families in Tuggeranong, six sole-father families and six couples. These include:

  • the new Canberra Fathers and Children's Service supporting single fathers with their children. This service receives $450,000 per annum from the ACT government and supports four families at any one time in refuge style accommodation, and six families in individual properties in the north of Canberra.

  • the Beryl Women's Refuge supporting women escaping domestic violence. This service receives over $600,000 in funding from the ACT government and supports four families in central Canberra.

  • the St Vincent de Paul Caroline Chisholm service supporting families with at least one child under 18. This service receives over $400,000 in funding from the ACT government and it supports four families at any one time in the south of Canberra.

Time does not permit me to list all the 53 services that this government is funding, but this gives the Assembly some examples of the help we are giving Canberrans as a result of our homelessness strategy.

This government is committed to finding solutions to the homelessness challenge that is facing the ACT as well as the whole of Australia. Over the next five years, the Stanhope government will increase its funding to the supported accommodation assistance program by $21.7 million. From 2005-06 to 2009-10, the Stanhope government will be providing over $47 million towards SAAP services. In comparison, the funding provided by the previous Liberal government in their final full year in office of 2000-01 was $4.3 million.

I also contrast that with the approach of the federal Liberal government towards the supported accommodation assistance program, where they are holding out and not recognising the initiatives that the ACT government has employed since 2002-03. It is appalling. I hear the murmurings of "What?"across the channel. It is the bleating across the channel. If the federal Liberal government does not recognise the leap forwards—the significant increases that the Stanhope government has put into supported accommodation assistance—the people of the ACT will be considerably worse off, as


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