The PSA welcomes transition support package, hopes for further workforce focus

Tags:

The PSA welcomes yesterday’s pre-budget announcement of over $150 million for a new Transition Support Service for young people leaving state care, and hopes further details will address social service workforce requirements.

"We at the PSA are pleased to see a commitment to ongoing support for young adults entering the workforce, and hope the Transition Support Service will be successful in helping our young people transition to fully independent and well-functioning adults," says Kerry Davies, PSA national secretary.

"The ability for this service to best provide for our young adults will be highly influenced by the funding details, and whether adequate funding will be going towards attracting and retaining the right workforce with the specific skills and attributes needed to support young adults."

The announcement allocated $153.7 million over four years to Oranga Tamariki, including $9 million to provide advice and assistance to individuals between 18 and 25 transitioning from care to independence, and the provision of 175 new specialist transition support staff to provide the day-to-day support individual young people may require as they transition out of care.

"It’s vital to acknowledge that social service providers have been struggling to hold the sector together for a long time," says Ms Davies.

"What we don’t want to see is the promise of time and services to vulnerable youth, without an adequately staffed and valued workforce to meet the needs of service users."

"While we are disappointed that there has been no talk of commitment to actions on pay equity, we are hopeful that the breakdown of this allocation and further funding will recognise the importance of funding the workforces of the NGOs, iwi and Māori organisations who will be providing these and other critical services."