Response to the Victorian Budget 2024-2025

Olivia Killeen, Communication and Social Policy Officer
Olivia Killeen Communication and Social Policy Officer
21 May 2024
A toy house sits on a bed of coins

Sacred Heart Mission applauds the Victorian State Government for its investments in the homelessness sector in the 2024-2025 State Budget, in a time of significant economic challenge.  

We, alongside our partner organisations – Uniting Vic/Tas, VincentCare Victoria and The Salvation Army, are thrilled to report that the Victorian Government is investing $45 million over four years to expand the Journey to Social Inclusion (J2SI) program across Victoria. Working with Homes Victoria, we will support hundreds of Victorians experiencing chronic homelessness.

As a result of this funding, the consortium will be able to deliver J2SI across Melbourne and regional Victoria.

Sacred Heart Mission CEO, Hang Vo says “We are thrilled to be able to offer J2SI to more people experiencing chronic homelessness. This partnership is a monumental shift towards ending homelessness in Victoria. It will change lives and transform communities.”

We are delighted that the Victorian Government has recognised the hard work and dedication of the homelessness sector more broadly and injected an additional $151 million into the sector to support people to end their homelessness experience; and the $211 million allocated towards a range of family violence prevention and support initiatives is a positive step towards progressing the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Family Violence.

In particular, we support the allocation of 10% of the homelessness package, to support the implementation of Victoria’s Aboriginal Housing and Homelessness Framework, Mana-na woorn-tyeen maar-takoort (every Aboriginal person has a home). We also look forward to the establishment of a four-year competitive grants process from 2025-2026 for homelessness services to deliver initiatives that ensure homelessness is rare, brief and non-recurring. We support the $19 million allocated to improve responsiveness for public housing tenants in accessing repairs and maintenance.

We were pleased to see $107 million invested in the Budget to build on the Big Housing Build and the Housing Statement released in 2023, to ensure ongoing investment into housing supply across the State. However, we were disappointed that there was no specific funding for social housing investment, as all funds from the Big Housing Build have now been allocated. The community sector has been calling for at least 60,000 social homes to be built over the next ten years, and this year’s Budget does not create the conditions under which this is possible.

We continue to call on the Government to prioritise social housing investment in Victoria, to ensure everyone has a safe place to call home.