The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia. Establishing priority needs for people who are homeless

Priority needs for people experiencing homelessness (1.1.H.74) or stay in several houses in a community

When a person does not have regular rent/housing or utility expenses to pay, income managed funds may still be directed towards other accommodation expenses, for example, where the person is participating in one of the following options:

  • short term crisis accommodation (e.g. hostels, refuges, shelters), or
  • medium term accommodation (e.g. hostels, managed town camps, boarding houses).

Special consideration may be given to homeless or itinerant people, where housing, rent or utilities are not priority needs for that person in the short term, by allocating funds to the priority needs of transport (especially transport to return home) or food and clothing.

A homeless or itinerant person might also qualify for weekly payments ( In considering whether to offer the option of weekly payments, the delegate should note that income management payment allocations are already tailored according to specific individual needs (

Interaction between income management & weekly payments

People subject to income management are not the specific target group for weekly payments, as income management payment allocations are already tailored according to specific people's needs. Weekly payments and income management are both options available to the delegate when conducting a social work assessment although they are not intended to work in conjunction.

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