This is the fourth COVID-19 update from WACOSS. We are committed to providing the WA community services sector with crucial information and high level resources as necessary, until the pandemic subsides.
Content from these updates will be posted on the Community Services Resource page on the WACOSS website.
Over the weekend, the Federal Government announced a second stimulus package. This included a temporary doubling of the JobSeeker payment (formerly Newstart). Long overdue, the COSS Network will continue its advocacy to ensure the increase is made permanent. Read ACOSS's response.
In other welcome news, for NFPs and charities, small business cashflow supports have been extended to the sector. This recognises the critical role that frontline community services will play in supporting those most affected by this crisis, though further support remains necessary. Read ACOSS's response.
WACOSS also issued a response to the Federal Government's stimulus package. Read the media statement here.
WA GOVERNMENT UPDATES
On Friday 20 March, the Department of Communities issued a joint message from the community service sector Ministers. A dedicated Department of Communities Incident Management Team has been deployed to plan and prepare for a response to the unfolding emergency.. Read more here.
There have been staff movements in the WA Government, with Darren Foster, Director General, Department Premier and Cabinet stepping down. Emily Roper will act in the role, until Rebecca Brown takes over Acting Director General later this month. More.
The Federal Government have relaxed child care rules to better support families should their children be unable to attend child care or where services decide to close. More information is available via Centrelink here. Here is a media article about the rules.
NEW RESOURCES AND INFORMATION
The Australian Government Department of Social Services has provided a webpage on the financial support available during COVID-19. More on the webpage and download the Fact Sheet here.
Directions for remote Aboriginal communities have been updated. Read more.
UNICEF has provided tips on how to talk to children about Coronavirus. Read here.
We will continue to update a dedicated page on our website with relevant resources and information as it becomes available.
The Prime Minister announced further nation-wide restrictions of activity commencing from today, 12noon 23 March. Premier Mark McGowan reiterated the Prime Minister's restrictions, and announced new border controls and which will commence at 1:30pm Tuesday 24 March.
WACOSS OFFICE CLOSURE, STAFF WORKING REMOTELY
The WACOSS office is closed, and staff are currently working remotely. Staff are available via email and you will be able to reach someone via 08 6381 5300, or through the Contact Us form on the website.