Latest News

Wednesday 13 July 2016

Our drought stricken rural communities need support

An opinion piece by CSSA CEO, Marcelle Mogg. Jack, a farmer in western Queensland, has been under financial pressure for many years now, thanks to the drought. The unrelenting stress and anxiety about the future are putting strain on his marriage and his family. He works very long days and is isolated from extended family and friends. Who can he turn to? Simon, another man on the land, is struggling under the weight of grief following an accident that killed a member of his family. He’s having trouble talking to his wife who is also grieving, and the whole situation is making it hard to deal with the daily challenges of running his large dairy farm. Who can help before it gets to a crisis situation? Up until June 30, both of these men were able to access tailored community mental health, and family and relationship counselling services that were established two years ago to support drought affected communities. Catholic Social Services Australia (CSSA) members are among the providers who have been delivering these services, often one-on-one, usually by visiting people on their properties over a period of time, at their request, or through a community event setting, such as men’s sheds, afternoon teas, or stands at agricultural shows. However, in a blow to rural communities, the 2016-17 Federal Budget ended the ongoing funding for these crucial, and successful, services. So, from July 1, these vital, on-the-ground mental health services ceased.

Thursday 23 June 2016

Australia’s leaders must develop more humane responses to people seeking protection

The Catholic Alliance for People Seeking Asylum (CAPSA) - of which CSSA is a member - has today issued an open letter to Australia’s political leaders urging them to develop more humane responses towards people seeking protection in Australia. The letter, sent to leaders of the major parties and the key spokespeople, follows the Catholic Bishops of Australia listing the treatment of refugees and people seeking asylum as their number one issue of concern. “One of the most pressing issues in Australia from an ethical and moral perspective is the treatment of people seeking protection in Australia,” reads the letter. “We, as members of the Catholic community, in schools, parishes, hospitals and other organisations are very concerned. Although interdiction has stopped more people coming by boat to Australian territory, those who have tried are still being punished and denied any hope of finding a new life in Australia.”

Saturday 4 June 2016

Election 2016 - New fact sheet "Housing and homelessness"

CSSA's Housing and Homelessness fact sheet outlines our position for the 2016 Federal Election. We look to our elected representatives to prioritise people experiencing poverty and vulnerability, through the development and implementation of social and economic policies that increase opportunities for all people to realise their potential.