Giving Young People the Best Start

Labor believes it is critical that government give young people at risk or in out of home care the support they need to succeed.

That is why we are committing to a range of programs that ensure young people can transition from different housing arrangements so that no one gets left behind.

Supported Emergency Accommodation

For too long access to housing options and support for unaccompanied young people aged 13-16 years has remained unresolved. 

While a young person aged between 13-15 years can be eligible for Centrelink if it is deemed they will be “at risk” living at home, they are not eligible for Housing Connect or Child Safety Services.

That means they too often fall through the gaps.  Labor acknowledges the challenge in ensuring that the support provided to these children is tailored and effective.

Labor is committed to giving vulnerable young people a safe place to live.

Labor will locate one site each in the North and North West to provide emergency short term accommodation for young people in this at risk age group. Labor will ensure that selection of the sites will be based on appropriate evidence to prioritise the best outcomes for young people.

We will draw on Colony 47’s successful Mara House model with the provision of supportive 24/7 care in place.

Cost: $6.3 million

Moving On Program

Labor understands that for many young people in the out of home care (OOHC) system, moving from foster or kinship care to independent living can be extremely challenging.

That is why it is important that they are given the skills and confidence to learn to live independently and achieve their goals.

Labor will invest in the Kennerley Moving on Program run by not for profit provider Kennerley to empower young people leaving the OOHC system to transition to independence.

Labor’s investment will deliver 16 new units for young people, supported by a specialist coordinator.

Cost: $3.1 million

Home Stretch

A key responsibility of the state government is to provide out of home care (OOHC) to those children and adolescents who need it. It is an expectation of the Tasmanian community that these children and young people are protected from harm.

Unfortunately the current OOHC system in Tasmania effectively gives up on vulnerable young people when they turn 18. 

With the current housing affordability crisis in Tasmania, stretched private rental market and a ballooning public housing list, young people exiting state care face an uncertain future. Within a year many young people exiting state care will end up homeless.

We know that young people who are not in OOHC are now more likely to continue to live with their parents well into their 20’s, often entering and exiting the family home several times as they pursue employment and education opportunities.

Labor wants to give young people living with dedicated Kinship and Foster Carers in OOHC that same support and opportunity.

A majority Labor Government will ensure the provision of care is extended to any young person needing or seeking support, until 21 years. By extending care, a Labor Government will ensure young people from the OOHC system will have a place to call home and the support they need to achieve a positive future.

Cost: $4.4 million