SCOA welcomes changes to community sector funding

Apr 30, 2024 | Media Release

30 April 2024

The Settlement Council of Australia, the peak body for Australia’s migrant and refugee services, welcomes the Federal Government’s decision mandating government agencies to pass on indexation to community sector grant recipients where grant programs are linked to one of the wage cost indexes. This decision will result in more consistent treatment of indexation for community sector organisations that provide critical services to individuals and communities in times of need.

Community sector organisations have advocated for consistent and predictable indexation for years. Indexation helps to maintain funding levels in line with increasing operational expenses, preventing the erosion of the actual worth of contracts over time. Nevertheless, the sector has noted inconsistent, insufficient, and unclear indexation of government funding for several years, resulting in an inability to keep up with the mounting wages and other expenses confronted by organisations. This decision by the federal government to adjust indexation will pave the way for consistent and predictable community sector funding. 

Having market-adjusted and consistent funding ensures vital services continue to be delivered to vulnerable people and sustains the hard-working and passionate workforce that often goes above and beyond to meet clients’ needs. This decision, which will also significantly boost gender equality in Australia as the increased funding will benefit the highly feminised industry, marks a significant step towards a more inclusive and equitable society.

SCOA also welcomes the government’s announcement that it will develop a Community Sector Partnership Framework. We look forward to working with the government towards meaningful administrative and cultural change across government agencies.

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