MYAN Federal Budget 2019 Statement

MYAN (Australia) Federal Budget 2019 Statement 
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Federal Budget 2019
MYAN welcomes the continued investment in social cohesion but is concerned that once again this is not a budget for young people

The $64.2 million investment in social cohesion initiatives is a welcome measure and particularly significant given the role that young people play in supporting the integration of their families and communities into Australian society. 

This includes:
  • $7.3 million over three years from 2018 19 to continue the Fostering Integration Grants Program; 
  • $1.8 million over two years from 2018 19 for digital engagement initiatives to counter extremism online;
  • An additional $22.6 million over four years from 2019 20 to expand and extend the National Community Hubs Program (NCHP) and establish the National Youth Hubs Program (NYHP); 
  • $12.6 million over three years from 2019 20 for the Community Languages Multicultural Grants Program; and
  • $0.6 million in 2019 20 to evaluate the effectiveness of current social cohesion initiatives.
There is also a further investment of:
  • $23.6 million over four years from 2019-20 for diversity and social inclusion programs through sport in regional Australia;
  • $58.2 million investment over four years in the Safer Communities Fund (SCF) grants program, which includes funding for crime prevention initiatives.
Despite these measures, we are deeply concerned about plans to reduce the permanent migration program by 30,000 over the next four years. We are also concerned about the increased waiting period of 12 months (previously 6 months) for newly-arrived refugees and humanitarian entrants to access Jobactive.

“These measures undermine the contribution migrants and refugees make to skills shortages and nation building,” says Carmel Guerra, Chair of MYAN.

Once again, young people have been forgotten with no real increase in Newstart and Youth allowance payments in many years, despite increased cost of living and high levels of youth unemployment. 

We welcome the following investments, as we know that accessible mental health services and employment opportunities are of the utmost concern for the young people we work with:
  • $737 million investment in mental health and suicide prevention programs, including funding for 30 more headspace centres and for Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health for the development of a new model of care to improve mental health outcomes for young people; and
  • $535 million investment in Australia’s VET sector, including in skills development, career advice and better linkages between schools and local industry. 
“MYAN calls on the Federal Government to ensure that all of these initiatives have targeted approaches to include young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds,” says Nadine Liddy MYAN National Coordinator.
Further reading:
MYAN (Australia) Contacts 

Nadine Liddy, National Coordinator - 0437 897 178
Carmel Guerra, Chair - (03) 9340 3700
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Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network (Australia)
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