ABC News reported that demand for caravan park accommodation is increasing due to the housing crisis.  At the Seaford Cabin Park, at the gateway to Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, manager Andrew Wilson takes another phone call.  “I’m getting at least 10 phone calls a day from people just looking for some sort of long-term accommodation,” he said.

Demand for his one-bedroom cabins has never been greater.  “We just don’t have anything available at the moment.”

Click here to read full article

The Federal Minister for Housing, the Hon Julie Collins MP and the State Housing Minister, the Hon Colin Brooks MP,  jointly announced the construction of three social and affordable apartment housing projects on track to soon deliver more than 200 homes in metropolitan Melbourne.

The homes will be built in Brighton East, St Kilda and Balaclava as a result of a funding partnership between the Andrews Labor Government and the Albanese Labor Government.  The State Labor Government is contributing $75.03 million for projects across the three sites, while the Federal Labor Government will provide $18 million in grants and loans for works through the National Housing Infrastructure Facility.

These housing developments will deliver much needed social and affordable housing for people on the Victoria Housing Register, including those living with a disability and for women over 55 years old at risk of homelessness.

Legislation is currently before the Federal Parliament to create the $10 billion Housing Australia Future Fund which will make more projects for social and affordable homes like this possible.

In St Kilda, a rooming house was redeveloped into 36 self‑contained apartments, for women over 55‑years old. The refurbishment includes a flexible communal area, with a HousingFirst office, providing a platform to encourage and create a supportive community.

The Integrated Family Violence Partnerships of the Bayside Peninsula and Southern Melbourne DFFH Areas submitted their response to the Department of Social Services’ Safe Places Emergency Accommodation Program – Inclusion Round

On 3 November 2022, the Australia Government announced $100 million over 5 years (2022-23 to 2026-27) to continue the Safe Places Emergency Accommodation Program (Safe Places) for women and children leaving family and domestic violence (FDV). The continuation will be a second round of funding under Safe Places and will be known as the Safe Places Inclusion Round (Inclusion Round). This is a measure under the 2022-23 Women’s Safety Package and the National Plan to End Violence against Women and Children 2022-32. The Inclusion Round will focus on improving access to appropriate emergency accommodation for:

Funding for the Inclusion Round will be delivered via an open and competitive grants process, with preference given to applications that increase accessibility by meeting the needs of women and children identified in the Inclusion Round.

Read our submission here

The Victorian Department of Justice and Community Safety recently ran a consultation process on the proposed updated rooming houses minimum standards. The SHSN submission concluded that the new regulations will provide a better quality residence for rooming house residents, however, the new regulations alone are insufficient to address many of the concerns raised by our member agencies and clients. 

The SHSN would like to see substantial changes to rooming houses in addition to the new regulations.  These changes must address the issues of safety by reducing areas of conflict (by increasing the mandated ratio of toilets and bathrooms per resident), funding additional support staff to assist residents, and providing alternative accommodation for people who cannot live in communal settings but cannot afford alternative accommodation. The changes must also address the lack of affordability of rooming houses. 

The SHSN believes that all people should live in housing where they can thrive, not just survive.  Housing should be safe and not detrimental to one’s health.  After the COVID pandemic and spending so much time at home, we all know the importance of safe, affordable, hygienic homes. 

Click here to read the full submission

The Australian Government is developing a National Housing and Homelessness Plan (the Plan) to help more Australians access safe and affordable housing. The Plan will be a 10-year strategy. It will set out a shared vision to inform future housing and homelessness policy in Australia.

The Plan is an opportunity to broadly assess issues constraining the current housing system. It provides a chance to identify actions needed to address the significant challenges facing the housing and homelessness sectors.

Click here for more information

Council to Homeless Person’s magazine Parity is calling for contributions under the theme “Safe at Home”, exploring the family violence response principles, policies and programs in which women and children experiencing family violence are able to remain safely in their home. CHP has developed a framework for discussion with guiding questions to support contributors. The content deadline is COB Friday 10 March 2023. Contributions can be up to 1,600 words. Submissions to be sent to [email protected]

Read more about the call for contribution here

Following the announcement of Jenny Smith’s retirement, the Board of the Council to Homeless Persons has announced the appointment of Deborah Di Natale as CHP’s new CEO.

Deborah has an established and successful career in the community sector, with a demonstrated commitment to social justice and advocacy for those who are experiencing disadvantage, and has a long-standing focus on ending homelessness. Most recently, Deborah has worked in the role of CEO of the Northern Territory Council of Social Service (NTCOSS) – the peak body for the social and community sector which includes in its membership Not for Profits, Aboriginal Controlled Organisations and NGOs that strive to provide better social outcomes for individuals and communities experiencing disadvantage. Deborah was named as one of the Territory’s 100 most powerful women in both 2021 and in 2022.

Deborah will commence as CEO CHP on the 6 March 2023.

Click here to learn more about Deborah’s appointment.

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