The City has contracted Aboriginal-led RooForce to deliver outreach services and connect people experiencing homelessness to appropriate services.
Walking around Victoria Gardens, Wellington Square and the malls on a regular basis, the teams can be spotted by their white polo shirts with the City’s Aboriginal artwork and ‘outreach’ written across the back.
“An approachable and friendly outreach team like RooForce enables us to respond immediately to someone’s specific needs,” Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas said.
“The purpose is to establish positive relationships and it is through these relationships that a person can be linked to long-term opportunities.”
RooForce Facility Services General Manager Gerard Martinet said he welcomed the opportunity to create change with the City of Perth.
“Our staff have engaged in conversation with all members of the community in Victoria Gardens, Wellington Square and Wellington Reserve,” he said.
“We are seeing positive results, with more and more residents now coming into Victoria Gardens and speaking to the crew.
“It is pleasing that we can see a change in the areas we are patrolling. We look forward to developing the services further and seeing more results.”
In the past year, the City of Perth has initiated significant projects responding to homelessness including the expansion of assertive outreach services and the coordination of homelessness services from Moore Street as a twelve-month trial.
Council recently supported the trial of two Safe Night Spaces which will see an investment of $575,000 to refit 160 Hay Street, East Perth as a Safe Night Space for women.
The City has also undertaken consultation for homelessness initiatives over the last 12 months, including a Rough Sleeper Advisory Committee formed by the Homeless Framework Committee and co-chaired by John Carey.
At the last Council meeting of 2020, Council endorsed the development of an additional 12-month action plan to further identify opportunities for the City to help those sleeping rough.