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Byron Shire
September 26, 2023

Call for Federal Govt to provide funding for Fletcher Street Cottage

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The Greens candidate for Richmond, Mandy Nolan, has called for local Federal member Justine Elliot to ensure Fletcher Street Cottage receives government funding to continue providing vital services to the homeless community.

Fletcher Street Cottage, a vital homelessness service in Byron Bay, is on the brink of cutting essential services.

Greens candidate for Richmond, Mandy Nolan, Image: Tree Faerie

Without ongoing government funding the service is struggling to keep up with demand and is being forced to fundraise to retain services. So far they have fundraised $240,000 out of the total $1 million they require to keep services operating.

‘Fletcher Street Cottage is a lifeline for so many in our community,’ Ms Nolan said.

‘The fact that the General Manager Louise O’Connell recently won Byron Community Member of the Year but is still forced to consider cutting services is a heartbreaking testament to the failure of our government to support the most vulnerable.

‘With Labor in power at a state and Federal level, the question we must all ask is, “Where are they?” We cannot play a game of chicken with the lives of the most vulnerable in our community.’

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Justine Elliot MP, replied and said, ‘In a desperate attempt to divert attention from the Greens’ destructive actions in the Federal Parliament, Greens Party candidate Mandy Nolan is now trashing the truth while undermining Ballina Greens state member Tamara Smith’s responsibilities to deliver urgent state government funding for local homelessness services’.

Fletcher Street Cottage provides an important service for our community and needs financial assistance to keep providing their ongoing services.

Federal Government funding is delivered directly to State governments so they in turn can provide financial grants to homelessness services such as Fletcher Street Cottage.

In this financial year, the Australian government will provide states and territories $1.7 billion in funding under the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement. This includes $515.6 million for NSW to deliver housing and homelessness services and programs. Specific decisions regarding which services and programs are funded are matters for state and territory governments.

Clearly Mandy Nolan doesn’t mind trashing the truth or Tamara Smith’s standing to cover up that the Greens Political Party are stopping the building of 30,000 new social and affordable rental homes for people in need.

Tamara Smith responds

Every single day, $1.3 million is delayed from going into social and affordable housing because the Greens Party is blocking Labor’s $10 billion Housing Fund in the Federal Parliament. This fund is the biggest investment in social and affordable housing in a decade. Disgracefully, the Greens are blocking it – along with the Liberals, Nationals, and Pauline Hanson’s One Nation.

It’s disgraceful that, while locals are living in cars, and women and children fleeing domestic violence have nowhere to go, candidate Mandy Nolan and her Greens Party colleagues are playing political games to try to win votes.

As the Assistant Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence, I’m on the ground speaking to people and groups involved and working hard to get this Bill passed.

The fact is at all levels of government, the Labor Party builds houses, and the Greens Party blocks them. The Greens Party is the reason people can’t find a safe place to call home on the North Coast. Our community is desperate for housing and the Greens Party needs to either back the Bill or just get out of the way.’ 

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  1. Justine Elliott, reminding us all of her irrelevance; keep talking about the HAFF to highlight the sicko joke that the ALP is playing with the Housing and Rent Crisis.
    It is ONLY thanks to the Greens ongoing and irresistible advocacy and that has resulted in PM “everything is impossible until its not” Albo to miraculously find $’s5.5billions across June – August 2023 for housing, NOW – no need to wait for any HAFF nonsense to kick in, maybe in 2024, 2025, 2026…or whenever, depending upon if it makes any money, and then limited to spending $’s500millions per year. That’s the reality of ALP cruelty with Housing.

    The Federal Budget is there to fund expenditure, its where that $’s5.5billions comes from, no need for some dreamed up PR stunt of a HAFF when we have a Housing and Rent Crisis, right now.

    • Joachim old son, just more weasel words coming from a totally irrelevant Greens party and a wannabee Greens Candidate for Richmond, who has repeatedly shown that she is so inexperienced that God forbid, if she were ever elected to Parliament what sort of a disaster it would be for the people of Richmond.

    • One hopes the greens are offering something that is achievable. Look at their call for a rental freeze not achievable under our constitution. So here we have a candidate offering policies that are not achievable but opportunistic.

  2. This request is a little tame. Why hasn’t Mandy asked Justine to ensure world peace?

    I am sure there is an endless supply of vital services that could do with funding across the nation. I am sure also that there are processes for allocating such funding. Why doesn’t Mandy ask Albo herself or JC (Jim Chalmers)?

    Being helpfully aided by the Echo to “publicly demand” this of Justine might create political advantage in the longest campaign ever for the seat of Richmond but is it about the Fletcher Cottage or is it about the campaign.

    Sometimes quietly working towards solutions works better than looking for photo ops, as I’m reminded by the visual of Mandy at Feros. Where is the publicity for the councillors and staff who have actually achieved progress on this issue.

    And if Mandy’s worried about homelessness perhaps she’s making demands in the wrong direction. Perhaps she could convince the Greens to pass the HAFF Bill. And while she’s at it, tell them threatening tax reform for $3 million + super accounts doesn’t help find the funds to fulfil all their demands.

    However, next time I’d rather like Albo to do something, can the Echo give my cause a bit of a boost by writing about how I’ve asked Justine to ensure the government takes care of it?

  3. I’m betting that there is quite a bit of mischievous political grandstanding going on here by Mandy Nolan and the Greens, as I understand it this type of funding does come from the Federal Govt, but it is distributed by the States, Mandy strangely omitted to state that fact, (maybe she just hasn’t got a clue?). Now if this is correct it begs the question, as to why Mandy is mischievously having a go at Justine Elliott when our local Greens State MP Tamara Smith bears much more responsibility. Surely Mandy Nolan wouldn’t be running a protection racket for another greens MP who has a history of not delivering for her community.


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