Earlier this month the Greens’ Meredith Hunter released her discussion paper on what to do with young people in care when they turn 18.
Among changes proposed in the discussion paper, prepared by the ACT Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services after months of research, is to commence a transition plan for young people from the age of 15, to consider the individual needs of the young person and be flexible. The paper says consideration in planning should be given to:
— Listening to the young person’s needs and goals.
— Development of a ‘life plan’ which captures the young person’s needs and is focused on a successful transition from care.
— Priority access to a range of government services such as dental and medical services.
— Provision for ongoing schooling and referrals/assistance with work or other training options and identification of financial assistance required to enter the workforce or continuing further training.
— Development of independent living skills and support and the consideration of the costs for independent living.
— Future living arrangements and accommodation.
— Linkages to appropriate health services and application for Medicare and health care cards, and support with applications for youth allowance.
— Provision free of charge appropriate documentations such as birth certificate, school results achievements/awards, care history and family information.
A bit of a win for Ms Hunter.
Submission on the paper close on 30 November 2010 and can be made to: SubmissionsOCYFS@act.gov.au