National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness
On 1 July 2015, a new National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH) commenced. Under the 2015-17 NPAH, the Commonwealth Government is providing $230 million over two years, matched by states and territories, to fund frontline homelessness services. In total, funding of nearly $250 million per year is being directed to around 800 homelessness services around Australia. In providing this level of support, states and territories have overmatched the Commonwealth’s contribution.
This NPAH gives priority to frontline services focusing on women and children experiencing domestic and family violence, and homeless youth. States and territories retain responsibility for determining where services are located, which service providers are contracted, and the amount of funding each service provider receives.
Under the 2015-17 NPAH, states and territories submitted a Project Plan to the Commonwealth for approval. Project Plans are intended to give a strategic overview of the delivery of the NPAH in each state and territory, as well as providing a detailed indication of how funding under the NPAH will be allocated, and how the NPAH outcomes will be achieved. Agreed Project Plans are available on the Council on Federal Financial Relations website.
The 2015-17 NPAH retains the commitment by the Commonwealth and states and territories to reduce homelessness through partnerships with business, the not-for-profit sector, and the community sector.
On 11December 2015, COAG agreed that reforms to housing and homelessness would be taken forward by relevant ministers through existing work on housing affordability – this report is due to COAG at the end of 2016. A decision on the future arrangements for housing assistance and homelessness services will be made in this context.