Supportive housing will be developed to help Western Australians who are experiencing chronic homelessness, the McGowan Government has revealed.
“Common Ground” facilities will be built to house and support people to give “rough-sleeping” Western Australians a place to call home.
Under the model, it will offer a mix of permanent, affordable housing that is linked with dedicated, tailored support services that will address the root causes of homelessness.
The government said that it was part of a shift in the way it “deals with the complexity of how people come to be experiencing homelessness”, stating that short term “crisis responses” were “only part of the solution.”
The housing was part of a 10-year $71.8 million funding increase for homelessness services , the largest ever State Government funding increase for homelessness services.
It adds to a $150 million Housing Investment Package announced on Tuesday.
The investment represents the largest State Government funding increase for homelessness services.
Planning, design and construction of the ‘Common Ground’ facilities will receive $35 million over three years.
An additional $34.5 million has also been allocated over five years for a Housing First Homelessness Initiative to extend successful housing-first collective impact approaches to new locations across WA.
Premier Mark McGowan said homelessness was a “complex issue” with “many contributing factors.”
“People can find themselves experiencing homelessness for a wide range of reasons, including family and domestic violence, catastrophic life events such as job loss, mental health issues, alcohol and other drug use and financial stress,” he said.
“Safe and stable accommodation is fundamental to the health and wellbeing of people in our community.
He added the funding would help Western Australians on the brink of homelessness.
“State and Federal government agencies, the community services sector, local government authorities and the wider community all have a part to play.
“Our $222 million investment is crucial in helping those in need get into a home, receive more support and break the cycle of homelessness,” Mr McGowan said.
Community Services Minister Simone McGurk said the “Common Ground” model would provide safe, secure, affordable and permanent housing.
“It will provide a safe place where services are located on-site and support is available to people who may need employment assistance, have mental health issues or require medical referrals,” Ms McGurk said.
“This model has already proven effective in ending chronic homelessness for people who have in the past struggled to access and maintain housing.”
“Most importantly, it will give some of the State’s most vulnerable residents a place to call home.”