Assembly passes transitioning out of care reforms

ACT Greens Parliamentary Leader, Meredith Hunter MLA, welcomed legislation aimed at improving outcomes for young people transitioning from out-of-home care being passed by the Legislative Assembly today.

“We had to act on this issue. There is a tragic overrepresentation of young people who have transitioned out of care into homelessness, trouble with the law and alcohol and drug dependency,” Ms Hunter said.

“This has been a long process, the Greens launched our discussion paper on the issue in October 2010 and tabled a Bill in August 2011. We took on board models from other jurisdictions as well as community feedback about ways to improve results we’re seeing with these at risk young people.

The legislation passed today has provision for:
• Continued supports and assistance through to age 25 (currently cut off at 18)
• More detailed and regularly reviewed transition plans for housing, employment, education and training, financial security, social supports, life skills and health care.

“I am extremely proud that the ACT Greens have been able to push this agenda and that this long overdue reform will finally start improving the lives of these young people.

“This will be a positive outcome for the young people involved as well as carers and the wider community,” Ms Hunter said.