On 16 November 2012, at a Council of Australian Government (COAG) meeting, the Australian and state and territory governments have agreed, subject to Cabinet processes, to enter into negotiations for a new National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH).
They also agreed, subject to Cabinet processes, to work on a one-year transition partnership agreement for 2013-14 while the new long-term agreement is negotiated.
The NPAH has been in operation for four years, and is due to expire on 30 June 2013. In 2011-12 alone, over 180 new or expanded initiatives were delivered.
The Australian government has committed to a further one year of funding, while it negotiates a new, long-term agreement and it is expecting state and territory governments to match the funding.
More details will be provided on this page as additional information becomes available.
Overview of the Agreement
The National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness contributes to the National Affordable Housing Agreement outcome, to help:
“people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness achieve sustainable housing and social inclusion.”
The agreement focuses on three key strategies to reduce homelessness:
- prevention and early intervention to stop people becoming homeless
- breaking the cycle of homelessness
- improving and expanding the service response to homelessness.
Australian and state and territory governments will work together to implement the strategic agenda outlined in the Government’s White Paper on Homelessness: The Road Home.
Under the current agreement (ending on 30 June 2013), the Australian and state and territory governments have committed to provide $1.1 billion in funding.
Implementation – roles and responsibilities
The states and territories will deliver the following four core outputs:
- implementation of A Place to Call Home
- street to home initiatives for chronic homeless people (rough sleepers)
- tenancy support for private and public tenants, including advocacy, financial counselling and referral services to help people sustain their tenancies
- assistance for people leaving child protection, jail and health facilities, to access and maintain stable, affordable housing.
The states and territories will also deliver some or all of the following additional outputs:
- support services and accommodation to assist older people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness
- services to assist homeless people with substance abuse to secure or maintain stable accommodation
- services to assist homeless people with mental health issues to secure or maintain stable accommodation
- support to assist young people aged 12 to 18 years who are homeless or at risk of homelessness to re-engage with their family where it is safe to do so, maintain sustainable accommodation and engage with education and employment
- improvements in service coordination and provision
- support for women and children experiencing domestic and family violence to stay in their present housing where it is safe to do so
- assistance for homeless people, including families with children, to stabilise their situation and to achieve sustainable housing
- outreach programs to connect rough sleepers to long-term housing and health services
- national, state, and rural (including remote) homelessness action plans to assist homeless people in areas identified as having high rates of homelessness
- support for children who are homeless or at risk of homelessness including to maintain contact with the education system
- legal services provided to people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness as a result of legal issues including family violence, tenancy or debt
- workforce development and career progression for workers in homelessness services.
The National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness commenced in January 2009.
The Australian and state and territory governments have agreed on Implementation Plans which set out new initiatives and additional services which will make a substantial contribution towards achieving interim targets to reduce homelessness by 2013.
The following fact sheets highlight the Australian and state and territory governments’ efforts to reduce homelessness and include details on each state and territory Implementation Plan for the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness:
- Australian and state and territory governments working together to reduce homelessness
- Australian and state and territory governments working together to reduce Indigenous homelessness
- Australian Capital Territory
- New South Wales
- Northern Territory
- South Australia
- Western Australia
It is a requirement of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) that all state and territory Implementation Plans are to be available on the Ministerial Council for Federal Financial Relations website. All Implementation Plans are available on the Ministerial Council for Federal Financial Relations website.
The agreement is one of three National Partnership Agreements supporting the National Affordable Housing Agreement.
- COAG website: National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness
- Council of Australian Governments’ Meeting - Attachment C - Affordable Housing