Young people disadvantaged after cut

Youth Futures CEO Mark Waite.
Youth Futures CEO Mark Waite.

The program currently funds eight service providers across the State, including Youth Futures WA in Joondalup, which is set to lose almost $800,000 and eight staff members.

Youth Affairs Council of WA CEO Craig Comrie said Youth Futures had about 600 young people living between Yanchep and Perth involved in Youth Connections.

‘The Youth Connections program teams up disengaged young people with a case worker who helps them find alternative education if they cannot attend a mainstream school, or access other forms of training or employment,’ he said.

‘The program has been independently assessed, and has a success rate of around 80 per cent.

‘Without the help of this program, many of these young people will lose vital supports that assist them in staying engaged with education and employment.’

Youth Futures WA CEO Mark Waite said due to the removal of funding, this ‘unique program’ would cease in December 2014.

‘For the Federal Government to simply abandon disadvantaged young people without any transitional funding arrangements is devastating for our region,’ he said.

‘On one hand they want them to ‘earn or learn’, but on the other hand they’ve taken away the essential supports required to access education and employment opportunities and break the cycle of disadvantage.

‘If we fail to invest in our youth when they need it the most, we will be paying for it in the future.’