The Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP) in Tasmania is delivered by the Migrant Resource Centre Tasmania (MRC Tas), under subcontract to AMES Australia. The Program provides individualised needs based settlement support to humanitarian entrants for up to 12-18 months. HSP provides 28 days of rent free accommodation.
MRC Tas works with humanitarian entrants through the HSP program, providing settlement support for up to 12 to18 months. HSP is designed to work in combination with other settlement and mainstream services (see https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/settling-in-australia/humanitarian-settlement-program).
People from a refugee background enter Australia on a range of Offshore Humanitarian Visa classes (see https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/what-we-do/refugee-and-humanitarian-program/refugee-visas ).
HSP clients are permanent residents, which means they are eligible for all government services from arrival. This includes permanent residents on Refugee Visa Subclass 200, 201, 203, or 204.
Humanitarian Settlement Program housing services
MRC Tas provides housing to newly arrived HSP clients free of charge for the first 28 days. MRC Tas leases up to 34 properties from Housing Tasmania in Hobart and Launceston for this purpose. MRC Tas will also source private properties and hotels for the 28 day period, if the number of newly arrived entrants exceeds their accommodation capacity.
After this initial rent-free period, clients sign an accommodation lease and become rent-paying tenants. This housing is temporary and provides people with time to find and establish alternative housing. MRC Tas provides support for clients to find longer term accommodation. Under the HSP contract MRC Tas may withdraw the provision of housing services if clients reject suitable property offers.
HSP clients are responsible for their own removal costs, rent, utilities expenses and costs associated with breaking a lease agreement (after 28 days) as well as costs of repairs due to damage and neglect by the tenant.
MRC Tas will support clients to contact Housing Connect if they need a housing assessment to source appropriate long-term housing after their initial 28 days. Housing Connect can also assist HSP clients experiencing family violence or a crisis situation to find alternative accommodation.
Housing Connect is where Tasmanians go for housing assistance and support, providing one assessment for everything from emergency accommodation to a long-term home. Housing Connect services can help eligible low income Tasmanians to find or keep safe, appropriate affordable housing.
Housing Connect can help with:
- Paying rent, bond or moving costs in the private rental market;
- Applying for social housing;
- Information and applications for supported accommodation programs and facilities;
- Information and referral to a range of community services; and
- Connecting you with a housing support worker.
Further information about the range of housing and support options available through Housing Connect can be found at www.communities.tas.gov.au/housing/housing-connect or by contacting Housing Connect directly on:
Phone: 1800 800 588
TTY users phone: 133 677 then ask for 1300 135 513
Speak and Listen users phone: 1300 555 727 then ask for 1300 135 513
Internet relay users: connect to the NRS then ask for 1300 135 513
Providing services that meet the needs of all Tasmanian’s is the responsibility of all service providers. Humanitarian entrants seeking assistance may require interpreting services.
Qualified interpreters can be sourced through Translating and Interpreting Service at www.tisnational.gov.au . For more information see: http://www.multicultural.tas.gov.au/translating_and_interpreting
Services for people from a refugee and humanitarian background
People from a refugee and humanitarian background, who are not HSP clients, can access support for up to 5 years through Settlement Engagement Transition Support (SETS) providers.
SETS providers in the south: MRC Tas and CatholicCare,
SETS provider in the north: MRC North.
All organisations provide drop in services, please see their website for more details.
Clients with complex needs can be referred into the Specialised and Intensive Services program. This program offer clients short term needs-based support to help them access appropriate mainstream services and develop the necessary skills to manage their needs independently https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/settling-in-australia/humanitarian-settlement-program/specialised-and-intensive-services