Rough Sleepers Action Plan

Rough Sleepers Action Plan

A message from CHP
Jenny Smith 

On Saturday 13th January 2018 the Victorian Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan was launched.

The $45 million package is based on international best practice of Housing First approaches and will significantly increase our effectiveness in responding to chronic homelessness. 

The plan, announced by Minister for Housing, Martin Foley, includes both additional medium and long-term accommodation options and capacity for support.

Accommodation will include: 

  • $2.2 million for modular one-bedroom homes with $2.6 million for onsite support to provide supportive housing for up to two years for long-term rough sleepers. This accommodation model was developed as part of the Towards Home package and people have moved into accommodation in Preston.
  • $8.2 million for community sector long-term housing options, including:
    • Village 21 - providing six relocatable studios for young people leaving out of home care who are at risk of homelessness, with a live-in mentor
    • another 80 units of long-term housing for young people leaving out-of-home care and women and children escaping family violence

Support will include:

  • $19 million to deliver assertive outreach capacity in locations with a high incidence of rough sleeping (based on AIHW and ABS homeless data) and currently little or no outreach capacity, including:
    • extending the existing Rough Sleepers Initiative to the Cities of Yarra and Port Phillip, and
    • developing eight new assertive outreach teams in Dandenong, Frankston, Maroondah, Geelong, Swan Hill, Warrnambool, Ballarat, and Bendigo
  • $9 million to develop six multidisciplinary teams each of six full-time equivalent staff in inner Melbourne, Port Phillip, Dandenong, Frankston, Geelong and Ballarat. The teams will deliver individualised ongoing case management, community nursing, and mental health support. This initiative will also develop a model of peer-led support
  • $4.5 million to reform the crisis accommodation service models at Ozanam House, Southbank and Flagstaff to enable them to deliver a more intensive and therapeutic service delivery model

Council to Homeless Persons warmly welcomes the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Plan and particularly appreciates the recognition of the importance of ongoing flexible support for people with the most complex needs, a critical piece of the response puzzle that we've been calling for, for a long time.

Next steps

The Action Plan introduction indicates it is the first phase of a broader reform of the specialist homelessness service system focused on four key themes:

  • intervening early to prevent homelessness
  • providing stable accommodation as quickly as possible
  • support to maintain stable accommodation
  • an effective and responsive homelessness service system

Areas for further work are articulated in the Plan under each of these areas. CHP will continue to work with the sector to advocate for service developments that strengthen outcomes for those experiencing or at risk of homelessness. 


Alongside advocacy focused on the State Government and the shape of service delivery, we are also actively advocating to the Federal Government to deliver a pipeline of social housing to ensure every Australian has a permanent, affordable place to call home, and to increase the quantum and security of Federal homelessness funding.

You can read CHP's media release about the announcement here, the VCOSS media release here, and watch a video address on the issue.

Jenny Smith
CEO, Council to Homeless Persons

Rough-sleeping-action-plan_2018-01-13.pdf Rough-sleeping-action-plan_2018-01-13.pdf (2MB)