Youth Action welcomes this opportunity to make a submission to the Select Committee on Job Security Inquiry. We are calling on the government to mitigate the impact of insecure and precarious employment upon young people. While young people see opportunity within the tech-driven on-demand and gig economies, they also expect job opportunities that are reliable and provide decent working conditions. Security is increasingly important as Australia recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Young people's voices and lived experience should be central to government approaches to job security and young people are eager to participate in decision-making processes impacting them. Youth Action encourages the government to consult young people in an ongoing and meaningful manner on these issues.
Youth Action welcomes the opportunity to make this submission to the Joint Select Committee on Coercive Control for their inquiry into coercive control in domestic relationships. Youth Action refers the Committee to the submissions of Women’s Safety NSW and Domestic Violence NSW, whom we support, regarding the introduction of a Coercive Control offence here in NSW. In making recommendations for change on behalf of young people, Youth Action’s submission focuses upon young people’s experience of Coercive Control and the non-legislative responses which should occur prior to, oralongside, the creation of a Coercive Control offence.
Youth Action welcomes the invitation to provide a submission to the inquiry into the child protection and social services system (the System). We have welcomed the changes made as a result of various government’s increased focus on evidence based and trauma informed approaches to marginalised young people at risk of, or in contact with the System. However, too many young people still find themselves at a disadvantage.
There are continued calls for greater participation of young people in policy development and service provision. This is despite many reports, inquiries and commissions into the failings of the System recommending significant, system level changes. Youth Action is advocating for a NSW where every young person is valued, engaged and supported. The cornerstone of this objective is improving the decision-making processes in NSW through utilising the diverse range of expertise of both young people and the youth sector as experts in their own lives.
Youth Action welcomes the invitation to make a submission to the Inquiry into Assaults on Members of the NSW Police Force by the Committee on Law and Safety. NSW Police play an integral role in community safety and have the right to conduct their work without fear of violence. While the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research indicates instances of police assault from young people is low, we believe this inquiry has the potential to strengthen police practices and programs to support positive relations with young people and limit any potential violent behaviour.
This document provides a joint comment on NSW Government's draft Student Behaviour Strategy from Youth Action and Yfoundations. We believe there is a real opportunity to embed young people's voice in the decision-making process, and support further consultation and engagement with students and youth organisations regarding school policies.
Youth Action welcomes the opportunity to respond to the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Strengthening Income Support) Bill 2021. We are calling on the Government to reconsider its announced minimal increased with a meaningful increase that lifts young people out of poverty. The ramifications of a social service system that continues to entrench poverty from a young age will lead to poorer educational, employment and social outcomes for all communities. A meaningful increase in Youth Allowance and JobSeeker will not only support Individuals but lead to stronger communities and empowered young people. This submission is informed by our ongoing advocacy in equity and poverty reduction, joint campaigning efforts with the Raise the Rate for Good campaign, and most significantly by the voices of young people and the services that support them.
Understanding how issues affect young people starts with listening to them and hearing their perspectives. Many organisations and stakeholders try to work in the interests of young people without asking their views on the issues that affect them most.
That's why we surveyed 3,400 young people to seek their views on the issues that they care about and which have the greatest impact on their lives.
We overwhelmingly found that young people place a huge value on fairness, equity and equality within Australia. Their attitudes and goals on important issues such as education, employment and housing are most often altruistic and aimed at creating a better society for everyone.
On critical issues young people are seeing widening inequality gaps within society as a whole, between generations and even within their own peer group. They are also overwhelmingly disappointed by government's response to their issues, citing politicians' lack of vision and inability to listen to young people. They feel that governments are not acting in their best interests or the interests of future generations.
Our report, Inequality in Australia: A Young Person's Perspective, provides direct quotes from young people on issues that are having an impact on them.
Social housing remains inappropriate and inaccessible to many young people, and is a contributing to poor housing outcomes for young people in NSW.
Youth Action submitted our policy paper 'Social Housing for Young People in NSW' to the 2016 Review of rent models for social and affordable housing.
Many young people have adverse housing outcomes, are overrepresented in the homelessness system, yet continue to have poor access to stable and long term social and affordable housing.
Young people have different capacity to adults, and are very different to children. Young people are often part of families in social housing tenancies, but also seeking tenancy in their own right. Their needs require due consideration.
In a letter to the review Youth Action gave further evidence and:
- pointed to issues regarding the definition of ‘safety net’ and ‘opportunity groups’
- advocated that young people be considered as a distinct cohort that have specific characteristics and needs
- addressed assumptions underpinning employment 'incentives' and 'disincentives' in rent models
Contact Policy and Advocacy Manager, Jacqui McKenzie, if you would like further information regarding IPART submission or read our policy paper on social housing below.
Submission to NSW Homelessness Strategy
October 2016: NSW government is forming its next homelessness strategy. More young people experience homelessness in NSW than in any other state and young people are overrepresented in the NSW homeless population. Young people are particularly vulnerable to homelessness.
Youth Action provided a brief submission to the discussion paper ‘Foundations for Change’, focusing on the interconnectedness of many issues and homelessness, as well as the role of generalist youth services.
We recommend that a homelessness strategy for young people must focus on prevention and early intervention; accessible, timely and appropriate support; as well as an increase in options for alternative housing options. We comment on factors such as housing affordability, working with the ‘whole’ young person, and issues such as domestic and family violence.