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QCOSS Action and Impact April - June 17

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Action and impact
April to June 2017
Impact of QCOSS advocacy
QCOSS successful in having the energy rebate for health care card holders and asylum seekers extended until 31 December 2017. This eases cost of living by up to $340 per year for those who apply.
Extension
Ongoing advocacy from QCOSS over many years leads to government reducing the price increase of electricity from 7.1 per cent to only 3.3 per cent for regional Queenslanders.
Price down
Centrelink
Following a campaign from QCOSS, our members and the national COSS  network, the Senate Inquiry into Centrelink debt collection reiterated key asks including: stopping the debt collection until fixed and reviewing all debts that have been raised by the system.
ERO
The government has acknowledged the pressures community service organisations are under due to increased wage costs arising from Fair Work Australia’s Equal Remuneration Order and has committed to compensation of $137.7 million over four years.
Five years
Ongoing advocacy leads to five-year contracts being introduced for homelessness services. This provides services with the certainty to let them get on with the job of addressing the issue.
The interview process was...
Engagement
Changing lives,  changing community
Switched on Communities
Energy Savvy Families
Community organisations in South East Queensland
$500,000 from AGL
327
Face-to-face workshops
Households receive one-on-one advice about electricity
5,268
Low-income and disadvantaged Queenslanders shown how to save money on their energy bill
Supported by the Queensland Government
more than 100 people in a two day community conversation
Supported by the Townsville City Council and Queenslanders with Disability Network
Cost-of-Living Action Group established
Membership from across sectors
Finding innovative solutions to address cost-of-living issues
1,520
To develop ideas to make Townsville more inclusive
12 months after NDIS implementation started
Community-led projects initiated by the community to move forward
Work continues to make them a reality
Digital electricity meters in low-income households throughout regional Queensland
Supported by the Queensland Government , Ergon and CitySmart
Enables monthly billing to help with budgeting and  energy saving tips
More than 10 community information sessions to build relationships
556
Households successfully sign up for the program
By opting in to an online program and reducing usage, households can win prizes.
Human Services Quality Framework
80
Organisations directly supported at HSQF implementation
Review and feedback on 13 self assessments for community organisations
The interview process was...
Engagement
Changing lives,  changing community
Switched on Communities
Energy Savvy Families
Community organisations in South East Queensland
$500,000 from AGL
327
Face-to-face workshops
Households receive one-on-one advice about electricity
5,268
Low-income and disadvantaged Queenslanders shown how to save money on their energy bill
Supported by the Queensland Government
more than 100 people in a two day community conversation
Supported by the Townsville City Council and Queenslanders with Disability Network
Cost-of-Living Action Group established
Membership from across sectors
Finding innovative solutions to address cost-of-living issues
1,520
To develop ideas to make Townsville more inclusive
12 months after NDIS implementation started
Community-led projects initiated by the community to move forward
Work continues to make them a reality
Digital electricity meters in low-income households throughout regional Queensland
Supported by the Queensland Government , Ergon and CitySmart
Enables monthly billing to help with budgeting and  energy saving tips
More than 10 community information sessions to build relationships
556
Households successfully sign up for the program
By opting in to an online program and reducing usage, households can win prizes.
Human Services Quality Framework
80
Organisations directly supported at HSQF implementation
Review and feedback on 13 self assessments for community organisations
Four focus areas for QCOSS
Continue place-based work and advocacy to improve community outcomes
Continue to build the capacity of citizens to engage in and lead policy development
Connect people and share resources, tools, ideas, evidence and training for a stronger sector
Continue advocacy to address cost-of-living pressures
Place
Sector
Citizens
Costs
"The next step is engaging Queenslanders and their communities to develop a shared vision and goals so there is no doubt about who we want to be and what we want to achieve."
Wellbeing for all
QCOSS Queensland State Budget Commentary 2017-18
Reports
Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) believes the 2017-18 State Budget was, overall, a positive one. What was clearly missing from the Budget was the voice and influence of Queenslanders - for that, greater focus and investment in place-based approaches and citizen-led actions was needed. QCOSS believes this Budget provides a solid foundation of initiatives and programs, from which genuine and lasting outcomes can be achieved. The next step is engaging Queenslanders and their communities to develop a shared vision and goals so there is no doubt about who we want to be and what we want to achieve.
QCOSS Queensland Budget Commentary 2017 - 18
FOR RENT
As the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) considers energy market reform and grapples with housing affordability, a new Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) report seeks to highlight the considerable barriers for renters seeking to reduce energy costs and usage. The ‘Choice and Control?’ report finds the combination of climbing energy costs and rapidly changing technology is putting renters at an increasing disadvantage. This is becoming a critical issue due to changes in the housing market as more people are renting than ever before, renting is becoming a longer-term option and the nature of renters is changing – from young, single people to families and older people.
Choice and Control? The experiences of renters in the energy market