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Monday, 21 May 2018
Page: 3913


Ms McGOWAN (Indi) (13:42): Colleagues, I'd like to tell you about a support service in my electorate called Junction Support Services. Established in 1989, it is a not-for-profit and does fantastic work. It supports people who are disadvantaged by poverty, homelessness, family breakdown, social isolation, family violence, mental ill-health and drug and alcohol addiction. It is a registered charity and they take donations from our community. Today, I would particularly like to do a callout to the staff who welcomed me to Junction Services on Friday and showed me around—Corienne, Michelle, Amber, Natasha, Cassie, Leanne, Zach, Rachel, Shelly, Taylor, Tanya and Megan. And I should not forget Bonnie the golden retriever, a dog who makes everyone feel welcome. The staff told me their biggest issue is homelessness. Right across north-east Victoria, more and more I'm beginning to see the impact that the lack of a national approach to addressing homelessness is having. Junction Support Services does a lot of work in this area. They tell me the largest cohort of service users are families and single adults aged between 26 and 35—22.5 per cent. Seventeen per cent of service users are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders. Junction Support Services works with 90 families. Seventy per cent of children accessing the service have experienced violence and 54 per cent have emotional issues— (Time expired)