WA Labor vows to house 100 rough sleepers | Ralph-Lauren

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A re-elected Labor government in Western Australia will spend more than $14 million to house up to 100 rough sleepers.

Labor says it will roll out a plan to immediately provide transitional and crisis accommodation for people in Perth and Fremantle if it wins the March poll.

Community Services Minister Simone McGurk said the government wants Western Australia to be a safe place “where everyone has a comfortable place to sleep”.

“Homelessness is complex, which is why the government is investing in proven initiatives that we know will improve outcomes for vulnerable people and break the cycle of homelessness,” she said.

“We already have a number of significant projects in the pipeline to address homelessness using the evidence-based housing first model, which combines stable housing with wraparound supports.”

The government’s initiative comes after authorities last month dismantled Fremantle’s tent city amid deep concerns about the long-term plan for dozens of homeless residents.

Police cleared the Pioneer Park camp, pulling down the last remaining tents and collecting belongings.

Emergency accommodation was offered to rough sleepers, including temporary hotel stays.

The move was panned by advocates who said the Labor government had failed to address the crisis in any substantive way.

The dismantling also came after the government took the extraordinary step of formally seizing control of the land where the camp was located.

Ms McGurk said while longer-term projects to deal with homelessness were being developed, the election announcement would provide additional accommodation to keep vulnerable people safe.

“That’s why, if the McGowan Labor Government is re-elected, we will build on our track record of delivering effective policies and initiatives by leasing a 100-bed supported accommodation facility on Wellington Street to give rough sleepers a safe place to rest and access support,” she said.

“We are already delivering results for vulnerable Western Australians, and boosting the number of beds in the system by using an existing facility will make an immediate difference to the lives of many people experiencing homelessness in our state.”

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