on air now

‘We are going to solve this today’: Minister promises to fix Youth Off The Streets funding cuts

Article image for ‘We are going to solve this today’: Minister promises to fix Youth Off The Streets funding cuts


A temporary solution has been reached after the Federal Education Minister and Father Chris Riley met this afternoon.

Youth Off The Streets has been guaranteed funding under the old model until the end of 2019.

Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan has promised to “fix” the situation that threatened the future of charity Youth Off The Streets.

Changes to the funding model for disadvantaged and disabled students would have slashed funding per student in half and left the organisation $1.3 million worse off each year.

Founder, Father Chris Riley, told Alan Jones he was notified by email, “in the stealth of night… without any discussion at all”.

The federal government also informed Father Riley the changes were retrospective and ordered him to repay $630,000.

The news has outraged many as the beloved charity feared for its future.

Ray Hadley invited Education Minister Dan Tehan on the program, asking for an explanation.

The minister insists the outcome for Youth Off The Streets is a mistake.

“We are going to solve this today and I’m looking forward to meeting with him because, as you’ve said, he’s an outstanding Australian.”

Mr Tehan says the nature of homelessness meant the new model wasn’t appropriate for Father Riley’s charity.

Ray questions whether any of the other 900 special needs schools across the country will be in a similar situation.

“We’re actually growing the amount of money we’re putting into students with a disability from $1.6 billion to $2.6 billion.

“There is always in these situations… you get the case where the model doesn’t fit the particular circumstances.”

“Departmental officials try their best but occasionally they get it wrong and you need the minister to step in and say, ‘Sorry, not good enough. We’ve got to fix this’.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview



Youth Off The Streets founder ‘got an email’ about millions of dollars in government funding cuts