The Victorian Inquiry into Homelessness report was submitted to Parliament with over 50 recommendations. Associate Professor David Mackenzie and Dr Tammy Hand, who head up the Upstream Project and are co-creators of the COSS model, highlight their key takeaways.
The long-awaited Victorian Parliament Legal and Social Issues Committee report, Inquiry into Homelessness, was tabled on Thursday. Committee chair, independent MP Fiona Patten, rose to speak to the report, declaring that “this is a report that this Parliament will be proud of”. She said the inquiry epitomised “the good work that this Parliament strives to do”. Other members of the committee, Wendy Lovell (Lib), a former minister of housing, Rod Barton (Independent), Dr Samantha Ratnam (Greens) and Shane Lean (Lab) all spoke in multi-partisan support of their joint effort.
The committee, which undertook its work under the difficult circumstances wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, received more than 450 formal submissions and held 18 hearings in Melbourne and across regional Victoria.
The committee paid particular attention to the lived experience of homeless Victorians. A key message from the committee’s report is that “homelessness is one of the most complex and distressing expressions of disadvantage and social exclusion in our society and requires immediate attention by government”, with the resolve that “Victoria can solve homelessness”.
Patten concluded with the optimist refrain: “We need to be smarter about where we direct our efforts. The two best things we can do are strengthen early intervention services and provide more secure, long-term housing for the homeless”.
Read the full article on Pro Bono Australia’s website.