- E1. Reconnect and Job Placement, Employment and Training
- E2. Men and Family Relationships and Family Relationships Education Programs - Extended Funding
E1. Reconnect and Job Placement, Employment and Training
1 July 2003 and ongoing until 2006-07.
Funding of the Reconnect program will be extended for a further four years until June 2007. In addition, there is an increase in funding for the existing 96 Reconnect service providers to allow for indexation of the program's funding arrangements to be applied from 2003-04, with an adjustment to 2001-02 real dollar levels.
Additional funding is included for the JPET program to provide enhanced capacity to maintain the delivery of appropriate levels of service in regional Australia.
The measure also provides additional departmental funds to support training, peer mentoring, promotion of good practice and streamlining of administration for Reconnect.
The measure will assist over 200 services delivering the Reconnect and Job Placement Employment and Training (JPET) youth programs, to maintain their current high levels of service delivery, particularly in regional Australia.
From 2004-05 onwards, an efficiency dividend will be applied to both the Reconnect and JPET programs consistent with funding arrangements applying to other programs.
Rising cost pressures have affected the capacity of service providers to maintain their service delivery at contracted levels. Indexation for Reconnect and funds to maintain both Reconnect and JPET will ensure that service delivery for these two programs do not fall below acceptable levels and that the service providers remain financially viable.
Evaluations of both JPET and Reconnect have emphasised the strong outcomes achieved by these programs. In addition, the Reconnect Program Evaluation found that providing funds for infrastructure to support training, peer mentoring and promotion of good practice contributed significantly to the positive outcomes of the program.
Total Government Funding: Ongoing funding for the Reconnect Program of approximately $20m per year for 4 years. Additional cost of this measure is $6.9m over 4 years.
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E2. Men and Family Relationships and Family Relationships Education Programs - Extended Funding
1 July 2003 to 30 June 2007.
The Men and Family Relationships and Family Relationships Education Programs will be funded for a further four years until June 2007.
The measure supports the recommendations of the Family Law Pathways Report (Out of the Maze - Pathways to the Future for Families Experiencing Separation), to continuing funding for men's services and relationship education services. The continuation of the two programs delivers on a 2001 election commitment by the Government (Our Future Action Plan: Better Law, More Options) to support the recommendations of the Family Law Pathways Report.
A total of $25.1 million will be allocated to these services over four years commencing in the 2003-04 financial year comprising:
- $19.6 million through the Men and Family Relationships program to continue men's services in rural, remote and metropolitan Australia; and
- $5.5 million through the Family Relationships Education program to continue services in high need areas of rural and remote Australia.
The programs provide support through early intervention and prevention to help families maintain and strengthen their relationships. The Men and Family Relationships program assists men to deal with emotional issues around relationships, so that they can enhance or re-establish positive relationships and manage relationship difficulties. The Family Relationships Education program assists couples to improve their relationship skills and to maintain healthy relationships.
Relationship breakdown has been estimated to cost $3 billion per annum to the Australian community. Relationship breakdown is regarded as a key factor leading to dependence on income support and has been linked with welfare dependency and poor long-term social outcomes. In 2001, there were 55,300 divorces granted in Australia. Family relationship skills can be improved through relationship education, assisting couples to develop stronger relationships and combat the rising divorce rate in Australia.
Total Government Funding: $25.1 million over four years