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2022 Federal Election - the issues that matter to our communities

For the Federal election, climate change was the leading issue for people who participate, work or volunteer at Neighbourhood Houses and Community Centres across Australia, according to a poll we conducted throughout March 2022.

We asked people to choose their top 5 priorities from a list of national issues. In the two weeks the survey was conducted, the poll received 1,388 responses. This included participants across 470 postcodes and impressively, includes representation of 122 of the 151 federal electorates.

The top 5 issues were consistent across every state. These were, in order of priority:

  1. Climate Change

  2. Housing and Homelessness

  3. Cost of Living

  4. Health Services and Infrastructure

  5. Loneliness, Social Isolation and Mental Health

Advocating for DGR status 


The Federal Government is proposing a new deductible gift recipient (DGR) for Men’s and Women’s Shed. While we absolutely support this, we see no reason why Neighbourhood Houses/Centres should not receive the same recognition. 


We have lodged a submission to the treasury on behalf of our members to extend the Draft Bill to include ANHCA, its peak body members and neighbourhood houses and centres across Australia. 


Similar to Men’s and Women’s Sheds, our houses/ centres provide:

  • mental health support to the community 

  • prevention of or relief from social isolation 

  • a physical location for the community to support individuals undertaking activities and projects 

Adequacy of Newstart and other welfare payments 


In response to a Senate Inquiry, in September 3019, we submitted our calls for:

  • an immediate $75 per week income to the single rate of allowances including Newstart

  • an immediate 30% increase in Commonwealth Rent Assistance

  • the establishment of an independent expert panel to set future rates for pensions and allowances

  • the inclusion of a wage-based component in determining future indexation

  • the regular review of rates by the independent expert panel 

  • replacing Family Tax Benefit part B for single parents with a supplement that increases as children grow

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