10 August 2020
(Community Recognition Statement, 18 June 2020, Legislative Assembly NSW Parliament)
On behalf of the Sydney Electorate, I congratulate the Haymarket Foundation on their innovative responses to the changing needs of people who are homeless. Haymarket adapted to focus on meeting individual needs on a pathway out of homelessness when their research showed many people were in an endless cycle of rough sleeping and emergency help.
Instead of standard packages, they assess what is effective and adapt to get better outcomes. Only about one third of their clients have access to a GP, so Haymarket used the COVID-19 pandemic disruption to improve health access to vulnerable people using Telehealth. This will get early attention to health needs rather than worsening health needing costlier crisis treatment in hospital emergency departments and is vital help for chronic conditions like diabetes, asthma and heart problems. Staff help clients negotiate phone consultations and onsite nurses help with clinical assessment. Telehealth adds to the alcohol/drug counselling and psychology services Haymarket already provides. Resources for vulnerable people are always stretched and I commend Haymarket for their search to use their resources as effectively as possible to get better outcomes for people who need a home and support to get back on their feet.