Tuesday, 21 February 2023
Questions without notice and ministers statements
Table of contents
David ETTERSHANK (Western Metropolitan) (12:20): (36) My question is for Minister Blandthorn, representing the Minister for Housing in the other place, and relates to the homelessness sector. Homelessness and housing services across Australia have traditionally been funded through the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement. However, the agreement ends on 30 June this year, with the October 2022 federal Labor budget ceasing future funding for the sector’s equal remuneration order. This represents an effective cut of $23.6 million to homelessness services in Victoria. The sad result will be a rapid increase in Victorians forced to sleep on Victorian streets or in cars or couch surf. This is a Victorian problem requiring a Victorian solution. My question to the minister is: how will this government bridge this urgent services and funding gap?
Lizzie BLANDTHORN (Western Metropolitan – Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, Minister for Child Protection and Family Services) (12:21): Thank you, Mr Ettershank, for that question. It is obviously a question for the Minister for Housing, and I would be very pleased to pass that question on to the Minister for Housing for him to provide a response in line with the prescribed standing orders.
David ETTERSHANK (Western Metropolitan) (12:21): I thank the minister for her response. As the current cost-of-living pressures exacerbate the affordable housing crisis, women over the age of 55 are Victoria’s fastest growing cohort of the homeless, so I ask: how is the minister addressing this immediate and urgent short-term need?
Lizzie BLANDTHORN (Western Metropolitan – Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, Minister for Child Protection and Family Services) (12:22): Again I am more than happy to pass this question to the Minister for Housing. Obviously the question is in relation to homelessness and is a question in line under the prescribed standing orders for the Minister for Housing. I would say that the minister, I am sure, will be pleased to answer the question and provide you with the details you requested.