Edward Mandla
COUNCIL SPEECHES
Specialist Womens Homelessness Services

Published On: 23/06/2014

Lord Mayor, when I first came to Council, the one thing that impressed me most was the Council’s work with homelessness.

I was greatly impressed with the dedication and hard work of our staff in the Homelessness Unit.

Yet, we were straining under the influx of homeless people coming to the City as borne out in the City of Sydney annual street surveys.

It is why my government introduced the Going Home, Staying Home reforms, a very worthy initiative.

However, with all reforms, problems do arise.

After many months, Councilor Jenny Green noticed one such problem relating to specialist women’s services for the homeless and asked Councillor’s to sign her letter.

Too many letters are sent out in the City of Sydney so instead I called Minister Upton and Councilor Christine Forster took on the challenge to sit with the Minister to directly address the problem.

It was then realised that the reforms needed to be implemented in a more measured way.

Not only did the Minister restore the Council’s funding, but she found an extra $2 million for specialist women’s homelessness services.

I am sure upon hearing this news, Councilor Jenny Green would have been over joyed.

Lord Mayor, there is no other government that is more committed to helping the most vulnerable in our society.

That is why at last week’s State Budget, the Liberal/National party announced a record $515 million to tackle homelessness.

That is why my government announced $1.3 billion to fix and build new hospitals to care for our disadvantaged, so long neglected by the previous Government.

That is why through my government’s diligent work, the NSW economy has gone from last in Australia when we came to power, to again be number one.

We believe the best form of welfare is a job.

But Lord Mayor, the proudest moment for me came last week when my good friend, the Treasurer Andrew Constance announced $500 million to help the most vulnerable of the vulnerable, which are our children who are subject to abuse.

The Treasurer has made it his life’s mission to rid society of this awful scourge.

I am sure all of my fellow Councillors were applauding that decision.

Lord Mayor, I see this Lord Mayoral minute is in response to the motion I have before Council tonight, so I believe it is only fitting that we formally thank the Minister, Gabrielle Upton for her hard work in not only restoring our homelessness budget but also gaining an extra $2 million for specialist women’s services.



I therefore move the following two amendments:

Add “Christine Forster” after “Alex Greenwich Member for Sydney” in paragraph seven

and

Add (H) The Lord Mayor write to Community Services Minister Gabrielle Upton thanking her for restoring $8.6 million to inner city homelessness services, including $2 million for specialist women's services.



Edward Mandla
June 2014

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