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Securing a sustainable future for SHOUT

By Rachel Stephen-Smith MLA - 3 April 2017 3

shout-header

As a number of people have written on RiotACT recently, SHOUT has been providing an extremely valuable service for a range of self-help and other community organisations for many years.

On Friday I met with the Chair of SHOUT to confirm our earlier discussions regarding the ACT Government’s support for the organisation and its members. I am pleased that the SHOUT Board has agreed to work closely with the Government to develop a sustainable business model.

It is important to be clear that the ACT Government has not cut SHOUT’s funding. The fact is that SHOUT is not currently funded by the ACT Government.

The Government has been working constructively for some time to secure a sustainable future for SHOUT. Because its services were previously assessed as being suitable for the NDIS Information, Linkages and Capacity Building program, we encouraged it to apply for that funding. However, we have also been clear in public statements and conversations with SHOUT that we were looking at alternative or additional sources of funding.

As I have been saying since February, we are committed to working with SHOUT and its members to ensure they continue to get the support they need to do their important work.

Unfortunately, Ms Lee has chosen to misrepresent the Government’s position and the work she knew was going on behind the scenes in the quest for a headline. This has simply exacerbated anxiety and confusion among SHOUT member organisations and the people they support.

Following an exchange of letters with the SHOUT Board, I have asked them to work with the Community Services Directorate, Susan Helyar and appropriate consultants to develop a sustainable model for the future. The Government has committed to funding this process and providing SHOUT with the support it needs to continue providing services while this work is done.

Future funding arrangements will be informed by the outcomes of this process, but I have assured SHOUT in writing that the Government is committed to working with the organisation and its members to develop new, sustainable funding arrangements.

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3 Responses to
Securing a sustainable future for SHOUT
rommeldog56 9:06 pm 03 Apr 17

Grail said :

What you and Gary are doing is absolutely misrepresenting the situation. There is no other way to characterise the nature of your scaremongering.

The main issue is the Federal Government’s attempts to balance the budget while giving away billions of dollars to corporations who do not need the money. The NDIS ICS funding was intended specifically for organisations such as SHOUT, but you and your Federal colleagues have decided that Adani, NAB, CBA and other companies reporting record profits are more worthy of public funds than SHOUT and similar community organisations.

This is the modus operandi of Liberals through the ages: give public money to rich people, then ask the poor to dig deeper to support the needy.

A great lefty rant from the pages of Bill Shortens Little Red Book.

Primary reasons why the federal budget is so deep in the red, and getting rapidly worse, include (a) legislated and largely unfunded expenditure from Rudd/Gillard/Rudd that is still washing though the expenditure figures (partly because Gillards Resource/Mining Tax was a fizzer), (b) NDIS : which is a very laudable scheme but which was very poorly scoped by Federal Labor, demand was totally underestimated and was largely unfunded for national rollout (which is now almost complete), (c) Labors stupid NBN scheme which was so mega expensive that it opened the door to the Libs to cut back expenditure and deliver an even poorer NBN. Labor created a whole Govt Authority (NBN Co) to co-ordinate the rollout of the NBN, as they have also done for the NDIS. Thats $ for public servants that should have been going to users. (d) Labors obstruction in the Senate opposing so many budget savings but passing most of the expenditures (often without the offsetting savings). Then there is the Senate cross benches – appalling feather nesting for SA by Xenophon and who knows which way One Nation will go on anything. (e) Abbott not taking away the Carbon Tax income tax reductions but scrapping the Carbon tax itself – how stupid was that !!

And the new company tax cuts for business with a turn over of m$50 or less – its chicken feed to whats really necessary and compared to our trading partners, who are already reducing their company taxes by much, much more. Will be difficult to assess how many jobs are created as a result though. Australia just has to lessen the taxation burden on businesses and cut penalty rates to remain competitive – or else those workers will have no jobs down the track.

Grail 5:46 pm 03 Apr 17

What you and Gary are doing is absolutely misrepresenting the situation. There is no other way to characterise the nature of your scaremongering.

The main issue is the Federal Government’s attempts to balance the budget while giving away billions of dollars to corporations who do not need the money. The NDIS ICS funding was intended specifically for organisations such as SHOUT, but you and your Federal colleagues have decided that Adani, NAB, CBA and other companies reporting record profits are more worthy of public funds than SHOUT and similar community organisations.

This is the modus operandi of Liberals through the ages: give public money to rich people, then ask the poor to dig deeper to support the needy.

Elizabeth Lee MLA 4:08 pm 03 Apr 17

Thank you Minister for taking the time to write this article and last week finally confirming with SHOUT that the ACT government will provide transitional funding. Having been contacted by a number of concerned Canberrans I know this announcement came as some comfort after huge community effort.

I do, however, have to respectfully but utterly disagree with your statement that I have “chosen to misrepresent the Government’s position and the work [I] knew was going on behind the scenes in the quest for a headline.” I have simply done my job – to represent and to advocate for the members of our community that were left in limbo due to your directorate and ACT Health’s lack of communication and certainty; the to-ing and fro-ing for months about the uncertainty of their future.

If the ACT Government had done its job properly when the issue was first raised, perhaps it never would have come to this.

I, and no doubt many of SHOUT’s members and affiliates, look forward to hearing full details of this promised funding and support.

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