Minister launches July edition of Parity magazine at Uniting

Published

August 2, 2022

Share on email
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Minister launches July edition of Parity magazine at Uniting ahead of Homelessness Week.

The confronting issue of pregnancy and homelessness was the focus at the launch of the Homelessness Week edition of the Council to Homeless Persons Parity magazine hosted by Uniting Vic.Tas in Melbourne last week. 

Following a welcome from Uniting General Manager Housing and Property, Kristie Looney, Victorian Minister for Women, Hon. Natalie Hutchins officially launched the edition, recounting her own story about growing up in social housing. 

“I’m the daughter of a young woman of 17 who found herself pregnant and we lived in high-rise public housing for the first five years of my life,” Ms Hutchins said. 

“Mum wanted to get out of that situation and by the time I turned 18 we had moved house 20 times.  

“I know what it is like to have to pack up a house at five minutes to midnight because we were behind in the rent, or they gave us very short notice.” 

The launch was attended by representatives from Uniting, along with partners from across the sector including Council to Homeless Persons, Launch Housing and Housing First.   

There was also a panel discussion discussing the impact of pregnancy and homelessness on both women, their children and their families.  

Ms Looney recounted a particular story involving a young woman who fell pregnant in high school. 

“She was very young, her son was born with a disability, and she was told he wouldn’t walk or talk,” Ms Looney said. 

“She was young, she was single and applying for rental properties and couldn’t get a look in, so she found herself homeless.  

“Then, one day her life changed. She was given the opportunity to rent a property through a social housing provider. Rent was affordable, the home was long term and it meant she could really focus on the important things in life. 

“Things like finishing Year 12, getting a Uni degree, and being a Mum helping her son doing therapy so he could have best chance in life. She was able to get a part-time job, so her income changed, and she was able to build confidence. 

“This story is a true story – it’s my story. It’s why I’m here today, why I work in this sector and it’s what motivates me every day.” 

Uniting’s Rose McGowan Manager Curran Place, Mother and Baby Residential Withdrawal Service joined a panel discussion around exploring the extent, nature and impact of homelessness on pregnancy outcomes for mother and infant.  

Two articles in this edition have been authored by our Uniting colleagues – Kristie Looney, General Manager of Housing and Property contributed an opinion piece and Rose McCrohan from Uniting AOD wrote a piece in collaboration with Sally Coutts and Kerri Felemonow from The Women’s Hospital about the work we do to support pregnant women and new mums experiencing AOD-related harm and homelessness.  

Read the full edition of Parity 

 

 

Related News

On Saturday 10 September 2022, 600 Firefighters and other emergency service personnel are ‘stepping up’ to fight depression, PTSI (Post Traumatic Stress …

It was through working at Horsham Uniting Early Learning that Samantha discovered her passion for supporting families doing it tough. “We were …

A little over a year ago, Cindy found herself with extra time on her hands and decided to make the most of …

National NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia in the first week of July each year (Sunday through to Sunday) to celebrate …

Uniting Vic.Tas fully supports the decision of the Tasmanian Government to raise the minimum age of detention to 14 years. While this …

portrait of Yasmin

At just 20 years old, Yasmin made the courageous decision to flee from Somalia with her two-year old son. Arriving in Australia …