Community Services Committee
Tuesday 8 May 2012
Administrative Centre 30 Frances Street Randwick 2031
Telephone: 02 9399 0999 or
1300 722 542 (for Sydney metropolitan area)
Fax:02 9319 1510
Community Services Committee
Notice is hereby given that a Community Services Committee of the Council of the City of Randwick will be held in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, 90 Avoca Street, Randwick, on Tuesday, 8 May 2012 at 6pm.
Committee Members: The Mayor (S Nash), Andrews, Belleli, Bowen, Hughes, Matson (Deputy Chairperson), Matthews, Notley-Smith, Procopiadis, Seng, Smith, Stevenson, Tracey, White and Woodsmith (Chairperson)
Quorum: Eight (8) members
Apologies/Granting of Leave of Absences
Confirmation of the Minutes
Community Services Committee - 10 April 2012
Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests
Address of Committee by Members of the Public
Community Services Reports
C9/12 Draft Randwick City Council Homelessness Protocol, and Draft Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation
C10/12 Council's Advisory Committee Minutes
Notice of Rescission Motions
Community Services Report No. C9/12
Subject: Draft Randwick City Council Homelessness Protocol, and Draft Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation
Folder No: F2010/00283
At its Ordinary meeting of 26 July 2011, the Council made the following resolution –‘(Bowen/Woodsmith) that:
a) Council, as part of its ‘Social Inclusion Plan’ initiates a public awareness campaign to provide residents of an understanding of the issues of homelessness with Randwick City.
b) Council, as part of its ‘Social Inclusion Plan’ prepares and distributes information as to the resources available locally for homeless persons within Randwick City.
c) a report come back to council on this issue.’
This report addresses the above resolutions, and recommends that the attached documents be endorsed for implementation and made available to the general public to improve community awareness. The first document entitled Randwick Homelessness Protocol describes the actions to be taken by council staff when responding to this issue.
The second document entitled A Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation contains useful information for people seeking emergency or temporary accommodation, and related social services. It may assist people who are either homeless or at risk of being made homeless. These documents if adopted will be distributed to service provider networks, the local chambers of commerce, local businesses and be available at Council’s Customer Service Centre and libraries.
Draft Randwick Homelessness Protocol
This Draft Randwick Homelessness Protocol was developed in consultation with: housing and social support agencies servicing Randwick City; and relevant Council officers. It is consistent with the State Government's current, and draft 2012, Protocols for Homeless People in Public Places. As homelessness is the primary responsibility of the State Government, the Council plays a support role in ensuring that the welfare of rough-sleeping individuals are monitored.
Key points outlined in the Draft Randwick Homelessness Protocol:
· Applies only to persons sleeping rough in places such as parks open spaces, and community facilities accessible to the public, and owned or managed by Council.
· Describes the role and actions to be taken by council staff when it is aware of a person sleeping rough; received information from a member of the community or when the homeless person presents to council staff for assistance.
The underlying principles of the Protocol:
· Rough sleepers have a right to be in public places, at the same time respecting the right of local community members to live in a safe and peaceful environment.
· Rough sleepers have the same rights as other members of the community to: privacy; respect, use of public amenities, carry and store their own belongings; be treated as individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences and abilities.
· All people, including rough sleepers, have the right to not be harassed or moved on from public spaces unless there is a threat to general safety, their personal safety or if they are causing a disturbance that constitutes a breach of peace.
· Council staff are to respond sensitively and without discrimination, whilst acknowledging that some rough sleepers may have a mental illness or disability.
· Rough sleepers, as are all community member, should have access to a right of reply and appeals mechanism.
· All staff in contact with a rough sleepers will:
· contact the Council’s Community Development team or Senior Social Planner if the rough sleeper:
o appears to be distressed or in need of assistance.
o appears to be a health, welfare or safety risk.
o there are community concerns about public health or safety.
o is behaving in a manner that is likely to result in damage to property or the environment.
o has a temporary structure for housing or bedding is not packed up during the day.
o is sheltering in circumstances that place themselves, or other’s health and safety at risk.
o appears to be unaccompanied and under the age of 16 years.
· provide the person with information (Randwick Council’s Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation) if the person is seeking information on accommodation.
· refer the matter to the Police when: a person is behaving in a manner dangerous to themselves or others, when there is a breach of peace; or an unlawful act is occurring or has occurred.
· The Community Development Team/Senior Social Planner will take all relevant details, contact Missionbeat, and record the details for future reference and to ensure appropriate action is taken.
· The Council’s Community Development Team or Senior Social Planner will also monitor the extent of homelessness (rough sleepers).
The Randwick Homelessness Protocol does not override existing laws and statutory requirements or regulations.
The Randwick Homelessness Protocol outlines that all staff are required to respond when they meet a rough sleeper who needs help. As a result, clear information will be distributed to all staff on how to respond.
Sleeping rough in parks, street and other public places is not illegal and Council staff do not have the authority to move on rough sleepers.
The Draft Guide to Homelessness Services and Temporary Accommodation
The Draft Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation has been prepared as an information brochure for members of the community who may require temporary or emergency accommodation.
The Draft Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation contains a short list of specialist organisations that will be useful for persons seeking emergency or temporary accommodation to seek initial support, advice, temporary accommodation or provide referrals to other suitable accommodation options.
It is envisaged that these two documents will be made available to members of our community including the local chambers of commerce, businesses and be available at Council’s Customer Service Centre.
These two documents will also provide residents of an understanding of the issues of homelessness with Randwick City.
Relationship to City Plan
The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:
Outcome: 2: A vibrant and diverse community.
Direction: 2b: Enrich our range of community services that meet our community’s needs.
Outcome: 3: An informed and engaged community.
Direction: 3b: The Council actively promotes the community services offered by other agencies.
Financial impact statement
There is no financial impact for Council. The cost of printing of the documents will be funded by the Community Development Department’s budget.
Whilst responding to the needs of homeless persons is not the primary responsibility of the Council, it can play an important role in monitoring the welfare of such persons and to inform them of a range of support services that are available to them.
The Randwick Homelessness Protocol acts as guidelines for council staff when responding to the issue of homeless rough sleepers. At the same time, it also serves to promote general awareness the extent of the Council’s legal parameters in responding to the issue of rough sleeping in public places. Subject to receiving Council endorsement, these two documents will be made publicly available to a range of service providers, residents and the business community.
a) endorse the Draft Randwick City Council Homelessness Protocol;
b) endorse the Draft Randwick guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation; and
c) agree that the Director City Planning may make minor modifications to rectify any numerical, typographical, interpretation and formatting errors as required in finalising the two documents.
Draft Randwick Guide to Emergency and Temporary Accommodation
Draft Randwick Council Homelessness Protocol
From time to time, Council staff receives telephone calls or emails from local residents and businesses about homeless persons sleeping rough in public spaces such as parks, bus shelter and on footpaths. While responding to the needs of homeless persons is not the primary responsibility of the Council, it has an obligation to note their location, establish the state of their well-being and ensure they have access to appropriate welfare. The Randwick Homelessness Protocol provides the Council with a process for responding to these situations. This Protocol applies to circumstances involving rough sleepers.
The term ‘rough sleepers’ refers to homeless people who do not live in conventional accommodation. In other words, they live on the streets, in deserted buildings, in cars, under bridges, tents and other improvised shelters.
The Council has developed this Protocol in consultation with housing and social support agencies servicing Randwick City. It is consistent with the State Government's current, and draft 2012 Protocols for Homeless People in Public Places. It states among other things that homeless persons shall be treated with dignity and have the same rights as everybody else in public places or premises.
Where the Protocol applies
The Protocol applies to rough sleepers in public places such as parks, open spaces and facilities, which are accessible to the public, owned, controlled or managed by Council.
The Protocol is observed or applied when:
Council officers come into contact with a person who is sleeping rough in public places owned controlled or managed by Randwick City Council
members of the community request support for a person who is homeless (rough sleeping)
homeless person requests information from Council about where they can go for assistance
Council receives information from members of the public about a person they believe is a rough sleeper
2 Underlying Principles of the Protocol
The Protocol uses the following principles:
All people, including rough sleepers, have a right to be in public places, at the same time respecting the right of the local community members to live In a safe and peaceful environment
All people, including rough sleepers, have a right to privacy, be respected, and to be left undisturbed, unless they appear to be distressed or in need of assistance
All people, including rough sleepers, have a right to public amenities and to participate in public activities
People will not be harassed or moved on from public places unless there is a threat to community safety, their personal safety or if they are causing a disturbance or nuisance
A homeless person is entitled to carry and store their own belongings with them
Rough sleepers are individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and abilities. Council Staff will consider these factors when communicating with them or responding to their needs.
Cultural sensitivity and respect will be applied when responding to rough sleepers who are Aboriginal or from a culturally and linguistically diverse background
Some rough sleepers may have a mental illness and/or a disability. Council staff will respond sensitively and without discrimination.
Council staff whose work brings them directly or indirectly into contact with homeless people will have useful information (Your Guide to Emergency or Temporary Accommodation) to inform homeless people and other members of the community of where to obtain accommodation and support services.
Rough sleepers, same as all community members, should have access to a right of reply and appeals mechanisms.
3 Council's Approach to Homeless Persons (rough sleepers)
When will council staff intervene?
Council staff should leave the rough sleeper alone unless:
they request assistance
they appear to be distressed or in need of assistance
they are a health, welfare or safety risk
their behaviour is likely to result in damage to property
a breach of the peace, an unlawful act is occurring or has occurred and the Police need to be informed
they are sheltering in circumstances that place themselves or other’s health and safety at risk
they suspect that the person is unaccompanied and under the age of 16 years
when the homeless person’s belongings creates a clutter or impacts on public access
Contact Council’s Community Development Team or Senior Social Planner on 9399 0994 if the person:
appears to be distressed or in need of assistance
appears to be a health, welfare or safety risk
is behaving in a manner that is likely to result in damage to property or the environment
is sheltering in circumstances that place themselves, or other’s health and safety at risk
appears to be unaccompanied and under the age of 16 years
How will Council respond to reports?
Council staff from the Community Development Team will respond accordingly to the situation at hand or from reports it has received
They will contact the police liaison officer to establish if the police have received reports about the person in question
They will make a site visit and provide information on temporary accommodation and related support services to the person in question
In particular situations, they will liaise with Missionbeat representatives to establish an appropriate course of action
When should members of the public intervene?
Contact the police if:
the person is behaving in a manner dangerous to themselves or others
a breach of the peace is occurring
an unlawful act is occurring and/or has just occurred
Note: There is no enforcement requirement with respect to homelessness. Enforcement will only apply where there is a breach of the law, and then it becomes a policing issue.
Contact Missionbeat on 1300 306 461 if:
the person is in apparent urgent need of assistance and it is after the Council’s business hours.
(please inform the Council’s Community Development Team about your contact with Missionbeat afterwards so that they can follow up on any future actions that may arise.)
Council's Community Development Team or Senior Social Planner will:
refer to Missionbeat newly identified rough sleepers for assessment
keep a centralised record of known rough sleepers and actions taken
liaise with Missionbeat, Police and Council staff about issues and progress in addressing needs of rough sleepers in Randwick City
provide information to the community about local support services for homeless persons
follow up with any referrals of rough sleepers made to Missionbeat by Council staff
4 Legal Status of this Protocol
This Homeless Protocol outlines how Council officers respond appropriately to homeless people who are in public places and acting lawfully. The Protocol does not override existing laws, statutory requirements or regulations.
Community Services Report No. C10/12
Subject: Council's Advisory Committee Minutes
Folder No: F2004/07646
At the 10 March 2009 Community Services Committee Meeting, it was resolved that the minutes of the Advisory Committees are to be presented to the Community Services Committee.
This report brings together for Council’s acceptance, the minutes of previous meetings adopted by the respective Advisory Committees in March 2012
As scheduled, the Advisory Committees (listed below) have met and the minutes of the meetings, which reflect discussions and outcomes, are attached.
The minutes will also be available on Council’s website after each meeting. This report includes minutes from:
· Multicultural Advisory Committee – February 2012
· Older Persons Advisory Committee – March 2012 (endorsed April 2012)
Relationship to City Plan
The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:
Outcome: An informed and Engaged Community.
Direction: Effective communication methods and technology are used to share information and provide services.
Financial impact statement
There is no direct financial impact for this matter.
The minutes of these Advisory Committee Meetings are now in order to be submitted to the Council for acknowledgement and acceptance.
That the Council acknowledges and accepts the minutes of the following Advisory Committees:
· Multicultural Advisory Committee – February 2012
· Older Persons Advisory Committee – March 2012 (endorsed April 2012).
Multicultural Advisory Committee
Older Persons Advisory Committee - March 2012
Cr Bradley Hughes (Chair) Randwick City Council
Colin Rosenfeld Randwick City Council
Katherine Zhu Randwick City Council
Peter Schick Community Representative
Janet Timberg Community Representative
Jiabin Gao Community Representative
Rosa Loria Community Representative
Ellen Gore Community Representative
Charlotta Oberg Community Representative
Cr John Procopiadis Randwick City Council
George Varughese Community Representative
Hendra Mulyanto Community Representative
The Minutes of the meeting held on 31 October were confirmed. Moved by Janet Timberg and seconded by Peter Schick
2. Business Arising from Previous Minutes
2.1 Citizenship ceremony
The Committee was informed of the dates of the forthcoming Citizenship Ceremonies which are held on Thursdays. Committee members interested in attending the ceremony should contact Colin Rosenfeld who will organise an official invitation.
Action: For noting.
2.2 Overseas Sister Cities Schools’ Cultural Exchange project
At the last meeting the Committee had agreed that enough time and effort had been given to the project over the last 2 years and that three local schools should liaise directly with overseas school counterparts to progress the project according to their interest.
It was agreed that a final follow up would be held in 2012 to ascertain the outcome of the project from the remaining schools.
Action: Feedback will be sought from local schools and a report given to the next
2.3 Harmony Day Festival 2012
In light of the benefits of holding the Harmony Day celebration at the Spot Food and Film Festival, the Committee had agreed to combine the two events. The festival has a very high profile, attracts a large audience and there are significant infrastructure cost savings. The festival also has clear multicultural aspects with numerous multicultural food stalls and a diverse range of multicultural entertainment.
The Committee had recommended that a separate and smaller Harmony Day activity be held, in addition to the Spot Festival, to ensure the message of Harmony Day is adequately promoted. A Multicultural Arts and Craft Day was suggested. However, it was noted that there are a number of big events being held by Council at his time including, the International Women’s Day Art competition and numerous Seniors Week activities. Also, the Randwick Art Society Exhibition will be held at this time. The Library had indicated a willingness to hold a Carnivale event incorporating multicultural arts and crafts later in the year around September and this idea was supported.
It was suggested that a Harmony Day competition with prizes be held at the Spot Festival to promote the message. People will be asked to write “what community harmony means to me” and prizes awarded.
Action: A Harmony Day stall and competition will be held at the Spot Festival. A Carnivale event be considered for September in the Bowen Library
2.4 New Committee member
Charlotta Oberg the newly appointed community representative on the Committee was welcomed. Charlotta informed the Committee about her interest and experience here and in Sweden in multicultural affairs.
Action: For noting
2.5 Migrant Story Project 2011
Katherine Zhu gave an update on the status of the project. To date 13 applications had been received with a mix of participants from different cultures. Someone from the Greek community is being sought to reflect the large Greek community in Randwick City. Randwick TAFE’s Media Unit will conduct the interviews and screening during the next few months as a student project.
Action: A progress report will be given to the next meeting
2.6 NSW Community Relations Commission Street Festival Funding
As discussed at the previous meeting, this is a significant commitment and ties Council to holding a festival in September for five consecutive years which is a very busy period for existing council events. These include the Eco Living Fair, Bali Memorial, Children’s Week, Sports Awards and Garden Competition apart from any civic ceremonies. Council elections will also be held in September. Cr Hughes informed the Committee that Council could not be expected to participate in this program this year or make the significant financial commitment. It was also noted that funds can not be used for Harmony Day activities.
Action: For noting and no further action
3. New Business
3.1 Employment Expo
Council is supporting an initiative of Sydney Multicultural Community Services to hold an Employment Expo in May 2012 for new migrants and refugees. It is envisaged that the expo will be open to all job seekers from the general public. Some 18 service providers have expressed an interest in the project. The expo will assist job seekers with details on local jobs and information on employment pathways. There will also be workshops on interview and resume writing skills. It is anticipated that the event will be held in the Town Hall.
Action: A progress report will be given at the next meeting
3.2 Greater Sydney Multicultural Interagency (GSMI)
A forum has been organised for Thursday 26 April at Redfern Town Hall. The interagency is being resourced by the Ethnic Communities Council of NSW. GSMI will provide a unified voice to respond to government policies and programs and the needs of CALD people. The Inner and Eastern Sydney Migrant Interagency (IESMI) which Council supports, is represented at the GSMI.
Action: For information
4.4. Correspondence and local activities
· International Women’s Day Art Competition 10 March
· Copy of Council’s cultural program 2012 which includes a number of multicultural performances.
· Indonesian Welfare Association Seniors Week celebration in the Town Hall on 26 March
· Sydney Multicultural Community Services Seniors Carnivale on 21/3 at the Prince Henry Centre
· Sydney Multicultural Community Services, International Women’s Day event 6 March at Bowen Library
· Spot Food and Film Festival 11 March
Date of Next Meeting: Wednesday 18 April 2012 ay 5.15pm Bowen Library.
Cr.Margaret Woodsmith Randwick City Council
Cr.Geoff Stevenson Randwick City Council
Frida Kitas Randwick City Council
Billee King Community Representative
Lee Barwick Coast Centre for Seniors
Susan McCann Division of General Practice
Mike Cornell National Seniors – Randwick Botany Branch
Keith Francis Community Representative
Jan Muller Junction Neighbourhood Centre
George Gergely Community Representative
Linda Mearing Coast Centre for Seniors
Ron Wood National Seniors – Randwick Botany Branch
Frida thanked Billee for kindly hosting the Older Person’s Advisory Committee meeting at the Prince Henry Hospital Nursing and Medical Museum at Little Bay.
The minutes of the meeting held on 1 February 2012 were confirmed.
2. Business Arising from Minutes
2.1 Seniors Week 2012
The Committee was informed that over thirty five service providers and Senior groups and organisations will be participating in the Seniors’ Information Expo on Wednesday 21 March, at Randwick Town Hall. Bookings for the Twilight Tour at the Nursing and Medical Museum are almost at capacity. Frida thanked Clovelly Community Bank for their sponsorship contribution of $1,000 towards the Seniors Information Expo. Council will also partner with Eastern Sydney Multicultural Access Project (ESMAP) to hold three healthy living workshops for older people and carers from Russian, Greek and Italian speaking backgrounds from April until June.
Action: For Information.
2.2 Access Issues
Frida reported that Council will be providing seating outside Freshpoint Markets and at Greek Cakes by Eleni on Anzac Parade Maroubra, as previously requested by Ron. Council will also build changing cubicles as part of the upgrade at the Des Renford Aquatic Centre, to meet the needs of people from a range of cultural backgrounds. Ron thanked Council for their assistance with this matter. Frida will also invite Tony Lehmann to attend the April or May meeting to provide an update on the parking and traffic issues at the Prince Henry site, Little Bay.
2.3 Therapeutic Gardening Workshop
Frida reported that the Therapeutic Gardening Workshop held at Council’s Community Nursery in February was a great success. An additional workshop will be held during May to celebrate National Volunteer Week.
3. General Business
3.1 Community Partnerships Funding Program 2012-13
The Committee was informed that Council is inviting applications under the Community Partnerships Funding Program. The program provides funding to not-for-profit and community based organisations to deliver projects, activities and services designed to: address the identified social needs of the residents within the City of Randwick, and/or encourage and foster the effective provision of community based services. Applications and guidelines can be obtained by contacting Susanna Susic on 9399 0677. Council will also be holding an information session on Thursday 29 March from 5pm in the Malabar Room at Randwick’s Town Hall. To book, call 9399 0677. The closing date for applications is 5pm, Friday 27 April 2012.
3.2 Randwick Council Cultural Arts Program
Frida tabled copies of Councils’ 2012 Cultural Arts Program at the meeting. The next concert will feature Sojourn – a joint project of Heval and Sangre Gitana Flamenco Dance Company. Sojourn will be held on Friday 30 March, 7pm – 8pm at Randwick Town Hall. Bookings are essential. Visit www.mca-tix.com.au or call 1300 306 776.
3.3 The Spot Festival
Frida provided an update on the Spot Festival will be held on Sunday 11 March from 1pm – 8pm and tabled flyers at the meeting. For more information visit www.thespotfestival.com.au or phone 1300 722 542.
3.4 International Women’s Day Award
Frida provided an update on the International Women’s Day Community Art Competition and Exhibition. Posters and flyers were tabled at the meeting.
· Mike reported that he is continuing to volunteer with Healthy Eating for Older People (HOPE) which is operated by Marrickville Migrants Centre.
· Susan reported that the Division of General Practice continue to run their Falls Prevention and Psychology Aged Care Initiative at a number of low care Aged Care Facilities in Eastern Sydney until 30 June 2012. The Division will also be expanding to support allied health services and become more community based.
· Frida reported that she attended the National Squalor and Hoarding Conference at the Sydney Masonic Centre.
· Billee reported that WAVES classes have resumed and there has been an increase in tours at the Nursing and Medical Museum.
· Lee reported that the Coast Centre have new classes including Yoga, Italian and French for Beginners. They also now have movie mornings on Fridays.
· CPSA The Voice Newsletter, January 2011
· The Junction News, Winter Edition 2011
· The Little Bay Coast Centre for Seniors Newsletter
Date of Next Meeting: Wednesday 4 April 2012.