“This pandemic has devastated families right across Victoria, so we welcome the additional emergency relief and hardship funding announced today by the Government. This will provide much needed assistance to Victoria’s most vulnerable.
“We’re especially pleased with the extra support for culturally and linguistically diverse Victorians, including temporary migrants and those on provisional visas. This is a group that’s been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, so ensuring they’re aware of, and receive, the emergency support available to them is critical.
“Since the start of this pandemic, we have experienced unprecedented demand in the numbers of people seeking emergency relief asking for food parcels, financial, housing or mental health support.
“In the second half of 2020, requests for food parcels doubled, while numbers needing help with housing, clothing, paying the bills or other support services, more than tripled.
“Our emergency relief services in Melbourne and across Victoria have seen people they’ve never seen before. People who have come to us desperate for help.
“We’ve seen international students to mums and dads in secure jobs who suddenly found themselves out of work and struggling pay the bills or just put food on the table.
“This funding package will help ensure nobody gets left behind. It will mean emergency relief services can provide for more Victorians in need allowing people to pay their rent, pay their bills and feed their families.”