Better support when it matters for a more inclusive Canberra
The 2017-18 Budget is delivering better support when it matters to build a more inclusive Canberra.
The ACT Budget invests more than $100 million to support all Canberrans to reach their full potential.
This includes $4.6 million for disability policy and services and $57.1 million to continue the single largest renewal of public housing in the territory’s history – replacing 1,288 public housing units with new, modern homes.
This Budget continues to deliver on our commitment to address family violence in the community. We are also making a record investment in the child and youth protection system of $43.8 million to ensure we can continue to deliver better services to children and young people in Canberra.
This investment ensures that as our city grows, Canberrans will receive better community services when they need them.
Better support for disability reform
The ACT Government was the first state or territory government in Australia to sign up to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). This Budget will provide $4.6 million to further support the ongoing roll-out of the NDIS and the National Disability Strategy, ensuring Canberrans with a disability have the support they need.
- $2.2 million over four years to strengthen the Office for Disability, which will have ongoing policy and oversight responsibilities in the ACT under the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
- $1.8 million over four years to establish the Office of the Senior Practitioner.
- $302,000 to develop a Disability Justice Strategy to ensure that people with disability are treated equally before the law.
- $200,000 over four years to support greater social inclusion of people with a disability by funding training, awareness and infrastructure upgrades for community organisations.
- $70,000 to support Self Help Organisations United Together (SHOUT) to establish a sustainable service delivery model, allowing it to continue supporting its member organisations.
Continuing to tackle family violence
In the 2016 17 Budget, the ACT Government released a comprehensive Safer Families package that aimed to tackle family violence in our community. This Budget will continue this work and take the next steps in tackling family violence.
- The ACT Government will invest $541,000 over four years for a Family Safety Hub to better link existing support services to ensure Canberrans receive support when it matters most.
- More investment in Legal Aid ACT to support victims of domestic and family violence.
- Continued funding for Domestic Violence Crisis Service to enhance its 24/7 telephone and outreach support service.
- Further support for the Justice Reinvestment Trial in partnership with Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service to deliver a family-focused approach to reducing the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the justice system.
Better and safer public housing
The ACT Government is continuing the biggest renewal of our city’s public housing stock in Canberra’s history. This Budget continues the work on replacing 1,288 public housing units across the territory.
This Budget will include:
- $57.1 million for the public housing renewal program to provide new, modern homes for our most vulnerable, bringing the total investment in this project to more than $600 million;
- $1 million over the next four years to strengthen specialist homelessness and housing support services for vulnerable families and individuals;
- $350,000 towards informing and planning the future design of accommodation appropriate for people with high and complex needs; and
- $350,000 to early planning of options for the design, location and construction of a second Common Ground and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people older persons housing service.
Better protecting our children and young people
This Budget will invest more than $46 million to better support and strengthen the ACT’s child protection and youth justice systems, including:
- $43.8 million over four years to support vulnerable children and young people by providing increased funding for child protection and out of home care services;
- $2.1 million over four years to support the continued safety and wellbeing of children and young people in the Bimberi Youth Justice Centre; and
- $883,000 over four years for the Children and Young People Death Review Committee, supporting research aimed at preventing child deaths.
Better supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Canberrans
The ACT Government’s commitment to Canberra’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community is reinforced in this year’s Budget, with a further investment of $602,000 to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander controlled organisations and provide better services to the community, including:
- $502,000 to support Canberra’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children with culturally specific, safe and informed services in the areas of health, early childhood and parenting; and
- $100,000 to support new and emerging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations through the provision of seed funding grants.
Australia’s most LGBTIQ-friendly city
We want Canberra to be seen as Australia’s most inclusive city, and this Budget delivers on our commitment to provide more support for the LGBTIQ community and further promote inclusiveness in our community, including:
- $1.4 million over four years for the Office for LGBTIQ Affairs. The office will help the Government develop better LGBTIQ policy, ensure Government services meet the needs of LGBTIQ Canberrans and better promote socially inclusive events; and
- $500,000 in additional funding over three years for A Gender Agenda, to better support the mental health and wellbeing of intersex, transgender and gender diverse Canberrans and further assist in removing discrimination and barriers within the community.
A more multicultural Canberra
We are proud of the cultural diversity of our community and the ACT Government wants to further support a more multicultural Canberra. This Budget will invest in better services for new Canberrans when they need it, including:
$1.4 million over four years to help refugees and asylum seekers improve their English language skills through expanding English language programs and workforce participation assistance.