There are many existing programs designed to support the financial stability of people in prison across Australia. Financial Counselling Australia and Thriving Communities Partnership (TCP) recognised the need to build a holistic understanding of the national corrections landscape to avoid duplication and build on existing learnings. In response, this project was born.
The Fostering Financial Stability for People in Prison project aims to understand the various challenges, risks and success factors for existing prison programs across Australia that are designed to support the financial stability of people in prison. It will work with people with lived experience, to build on existing initiatives and seek to understand how programs that support people to leave prison in a financially stable position can be as effective as possible.
This project has been enabled by a grant from the Financial Counselling Foundation and we thank them for their support.
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Phase One - Emerging insights and opportunities
Research insights were generated from 22 deep-dive interviews with financial counsellors, corrections staff, community sector and essential services sector representatives from across Australia. A focus group with Victorian financial counsellors working in prisons and a national cross-sector workshop further matured these findings. Key insights and emerging opportunities identified were:
- There are diverse cohorts of people in prison with specific needs in relation to financial stability
- There is a spectrum of debt-related needs
- Low priority of financial matters is a barrier to accessing support
- Targeted support for people on remand and short sentences is a current challenge and key opportunity
- Continuity of support improves outcomes, but there are many barriers to achieving this across the journey
- Barriers for essential service providers supporting customers in prison
Case Studies - click to enlarge/download pdf
Are you involved in a project or pilot that supports the financial stability of people in prison you’d like to share? Submit your case study here