MEDIA RELEASE – WEDNESDAY 9 NOVEMBER 2016
Young mum to deliver petitions from 40,000 Australians calling on the Federal Government to prioritise homelessness funding and reform to avert looming crisis
A delegation led by a 24-year-old mother with a ten-year history of homelessness will deliver petitions comprising over 40,000 signatures from Australians who are concerned the Federal Government is not meeting its responsibilities to the most vulnerable members of our community.
Hayley Van Summeren, who started the petition at the last federal election, will be joined by the heads of Homelessness Australia, National Shelter and ACOSS, who will meet with MPs and Senators throughout the day.
A number of federal MPs and state and territory housing ministers have already expressed support for urgently resolving the funding uncertainty around the soon-to-lapse National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH) and allowing around 180 services to continue providing their services.
Ms Van Summeren said ‘I first became homeless when I was 14. It has been the biggest struggle of my life, to stay safe when I was homeless, to get a roof over my head, to get a job, to deal with the trauma from that time and to be the best mum I can be. Without the support I received, my story would be a completely different one. No-one deserves that.’
The cuts would see $115 million of Federal Government funding lost and that, along with matching state funds, would see 80,000 Australians missing out on crisis support and housing each year. Nearly all of the 180 services would face closure.