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New 100-bed homelessness facility to open in Perth CBD

Aaron Bloch -

A 100-bed homelessness facility in the Perth CBD is set to assist rough sleepers when it opens its doors next month.

The Department of Communities has secured the lease for 300 Wellington Street, previously a YHA Hostel, to provide transitional accommodation and support for up to 100 homeless people in the Perth metropolitan area.

Named Boorloo Bidee Mia ('Perth pathway to housing' in Noongar), the facility will provide immediate, low-barrier accommodation as well as tailored support for residents during their stay.

"The McGowan Government already has a number of significant projects in the pipeline to address homelessness across the Perth metropolitan area, but it is clear that an interim response is required while longer-term solutions like Common Ground are being developed," said Community Services Minister Simone McGurk.

"The new Boorloo Bidee Mia homelessness facility on Wellington Street delivers on our commitment to provide an immediate increase in the number of beds available for rough sleepers in our city."

Minister McGurk also said due to Aboriginal people being "overrepresented among chronic rough sleepers" in the CBD area, Boorloo Bidee Mia will provide culturally appropriate support from Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations.

Wungening Aboriginal Corporation and Noongar Mia Mia have also been given a grant of $6.7 million to implement and deliver culturally appropriate and informed responses, tenancy management and lodging support to Boorloo Bidee Mia residents over the next three years.

With the lease commencing August 1, the facility is expected to open next month, with capacity expected to increase over time. It's understood the number of people in the facility will vary based on needs and the level of support required, as well as demand.

The Wellington Street facility will also improve local employment, with recruitment currently ongoing for 20 positions across tenancy support, counselling and case work

In addition to the Boorloo Bidee Mia facility, the McGowan Government has also allocated $45.5 million in the State Budget to the Common Ground facility in East Perth, including $8 million from the Commonwealth through the Perth City Deal.

The funding will support the construction of 112 self-contained units, communal areas, on-site support services, and commercial space on-site.

By Aaron Bloch

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