Coast Shelter, in conjunction with Homelessness NSW, held a symposium this morning to discuss the broader policy agenda regarding the homelessness and housing issues on the Central Coast prior to the upcoming election.
Panellists included Trina Jones, CEO of Homelessness NSW, Miley Nixon (Specialist Homelessness Services Team Leader of Bungree Aboriginal Association), Glenn Cannard (Culture and Community Manager at Central Coast Council) and Angela Whitby (General Manager of Catholic Care).
Attendees also heard from a local man with lived experience, and local MPs, Adam Crouch and Liesl Tesch, were given time at the end to outline their plans for addressing homelessness and housing on the Central Coast.
Coast Shelter CEO Michael Starr said Coast Shelter believed NSW needs significant change.
“We need to see a policy reset in relation to the delivery of services for homelessness and domestic and family violence. We need to make sure services are backed by evidence, have certainty and are funded for a number of years not just six to twelve months. We need to see a dedicated Minister in the next NSW Government for Homelessness and Housing and that their number one priority is to not only work with service providers but peak bodies, people with lived experience and local government to ensure we can increase the supply of affordable and social housing for people across NSW. As the Chief Executive Officer of Homelessness NSW said today, it all starts with a home and roof over someone’s head”, Starr said.
Homelessness NSW CEO Trina Jones said “Services are seeing beyond the numbers of people they are resourced or funded to see. We need to have investment in frontline services and services to be funded to support people out of crisis and into housing.
“We need housing that is affordable for people on low incomes – the same people who are increasingly being locked out of the rental markets in cities and regions across NSW”, Jones concluded.
Coast Shelter is a leading not-for-profit organisation providing specialist homelessness, domestic and family violence support services and crisis accommodation for young women, women with accompanying children, young people and men in the region.