Continued investment in the Youth at Risk Initiative (YARI)
The Labor Party has announced continuation of $13 million of funding over three years that will be directed to 42 services operating as part of the Youth at Risk Initiative (YARI). A further $2 million would be added to meet future demand for this service.
PeakCare congratulates the Labor Party on their ongoing support of YARI.
As discussed within PeakCare’s Position Paper, Government Portfolio and Departmental Program Arrangements, child protection responses are predominantly designed to cater for young children and are often inadequate in addressing the needs of marginalised young people in their teenage years.
A group who is often especially disadvantaged by the lack of available, sufficient or relevant government or non-government services or restrictive eligibility criteria includes marginalised young people who:
- are in care
- are subject to dual orders, or
- should be receiving assistance from the child protection system but who, due to their age, are perceived as being in less need than younger children of protective interventions.
These young people often include those who are homeless, rough sleeping, young people leaving a youth detention centre and / or who have mental health or substance use issues. Young people who are particularly vulnerable include those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or intersex.
PeakCare has also strongly advocated in the past for improved support and assistance to young people in their transitions from care to independence, as described within our Position Paper, Children’s and Young People’s Transitions.
PeakCare now looks forward to hearing more from the political parties about ways in which a cross-government, cross-sector policy and practice framework can be developed for better protecting the interests of marginalised, vulnerable and at risk young people.
If you have a view or opinion about Labor’s continued support of YARI or a related matter, please enter a comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lindsay Wegener, Executive Director, PeakCare Queensland