People with disabilities and the homeless will be among those to benefit from a multi-million dollar State Government funding boost to non-Government agencies, Treasurer Eric Ripper announced today.
The Treasurer said an extra $36.3million would go to Western Australian non-Government organisations and church-based charities to help improve disability and child protection services.
As well, $6.3million would be offered as a one-off back payment to help agencies provide crucial support services.
Mr Ripper said Treasury had reviewed the process for calculating funding for the groups at the request of Disability Services Minister Sheila McHale.
Under the new procedure, the indexation rate would be calculated annually as part of the mid-year financial review in December.
The Treasurer said approval had also been given for an annual adjustment of the forward estimates to reflect the revised rates, including the current Budget year.
“These measures will help ensure that these vital non-Government bodies can deliver more effective and more efficient help in areas where it really counts,” he said.
“This is another example of how the State Government is working to ensure that as many Western Australians as possible benefit from our sustained economic growth.”
Ms McHale said she was delighted that more funds could be injected into such key areas.
“Non-Government agencies are at the coal face when it comes to helping people in need,” she said.
“The funding will be backdated to 2004, creating a welcome Christmas windfall for organisations that have been under pressure in providing for people with disabilities, their families and their carers.”
Ms McHale said the State Government had committed to reviewing the formula last May and now had the most comprehensive whole-of-government approach to providing fair indexation for non-Government human services in Australia.
Communities Minister Sue Ellery said the WA Government’s annual increase in funding to non-Government organisations and charities was already the most generous in Australia but the new initiative was a very welcome addition to a crucial area.
“This funding boost will help those in the community who most need support such as children, the homeless and families in crisis,” Ms Ellery said.
“The continuity and sustainability of our partner non-Government sector depends on State Government contributions.”
Treasurer’s office - 9222 8788
Minister for Disability Services office - 9213 6900
Minister for Communities office - 9213 7150