Page 2334 - Week 06 - Thursday, 7 June 2018
(5) Is there any tenancy training, where appropriate, that have a particular focus on addressing the causes of housing vulnerability for people from CALD backgrounds.
(6) Are there any specific requirements for culturally capable service delivery and practices in future funding agreements for housing services.
(7) How is equitable access for people from CALD backgrounds to affordable and secure housing options through available services and programs ensured.
(8) What support is provided for tenants to access culturally appropriate services and programs.
Ms Berry: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:
(1) The particular needs of people with culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds are recognised by Housing ACT. CALD groups were part of the community consultations undertaken in 2017 for the ACT Government’s Towards a new Housing Strategy discussion paper. To assist CALD clients, Housing ACT fact sheets are available in a range of languages. Social Housing applicants and tenants have access to the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) if required. TIS can provide telephone translating services to people who don’t speak English and to organisations that need to speak with their non-English speaking clients.
(2) An annual survey of social housing tenants measures their satisfaction across a broad range of topics relevant to their housing and the service they receive. This survey is delivered by mail and electronically (i.e can be completed online using a mobile phone). To maximise the reach and ensure the representativeness of the sample, the questionnaires are translated and made available in eight commonly spoken languages, which can be either accessed on line or by requesting a mail survey in the language of choice.
(3) In terms of resource development, the sector uses its collective voice and decision –making body, the Joint Pathways Group, to develop appropriate support and better outcomes for people from CALD backgrounds who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. As an initial point of contact, OneLink, the central intake service for homelessness services, provides service users with direct access to telephone interpreter services, through the Translating and Interpreting Service, if required. Information about this service is available on the OneLink website at https:/www.onelink.org.au/contact-us
(4) Housing ACT Tenancy staff are provided with training on working with diverse clients. For example, the Certificate IV in Social Housing and Homelessness, completed by many staff, includes a unit on “Working with Diverse People”. “Working with Refugee Families” is another course provided by the Community Services Directorate to help assist staff in supporting CALD households.
(5) See question (4)
(6) Housing ACT current Service Funding Agreements with the ACT Specialist Homelessness Sector require services to report on “initiatives that improve engagement with CALD service users to contribute to improved housing outcomes”. Organisations must also use quality improvement practices, and undertake cultural