Find the latest updates and news on COVID-19 for the community services sector here.

Latest updates on JobKeeper payments

The threshold for the JobKeeper subsidy for charities registered with the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profit Commission (ACNC) has changed. All charities will now be eligible for JobKeeper payment if they estimate their turnover has or will likely fall by 15 per cent. This has been lowered from 30 per cent for other small and medium-sized businesses. For more information, read the updated JobKeeper payment fact sheet.

Latest updates on applying for Centrelink payments

For people already getting income support payments you don't need to do anything. 

If you do not have a Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN) you don't need to visit a Centrelink Service Centre to make a claim. You will need to set up a myGov account linked to Centrelink and you'll need to call Services Australia on 132 850 to get a Customer Reference Number (CRN). The job seeker line hours of operation have been extended from 8:00am to 8:00pm on weekdays and 9:00am to 5:00pm on weekends.

You can find more information on the DSS website - JobSeeker payment - how to claim or visit our income support payment page.

Australian Government updates

Find links to the latest essential information on the Australian Government website

8 April 2020

$130 billion JobKeeper payment passes the parliament. Read the media release.

7 April 2020

National Cabinet announced a mandatory code for commercial tenancies, including that rent would be lowered in line with a business’ loss of income. Read the media release.

2 April 2020

Around one million families will receive free child care during the coronavirus epidemic. The government will pay 50 per cent of the sector's fee revenue as long as services remain open and do not charge families for care. The Government will also provide $453.2 million for preschools in 2021 to support almost 350,000 children to attend preschool. Read the media release.

29 March 2020

$1.1 billion to support more mental health, Medicare and domestic violence services

More help will be given to millions of Australians battling the devastating impacts of coronavirus with a $1.1 billion package which boosts mental health services, domestic violence support, Medicare assistance for people at home and emergency food relief.. Read the media release.

Information for schools and universities

Information for aged care and older Australians

Queensland Government

9 April 2020

Special COVID-19 protections for residential tenants and owners

The Queensland Government has unveiled a package of measures to implement the freeze on evictions due to rent arrears for Queensland tenants impacted by COVID-19. Read media release.

Protections for retail and commercial tenants

Commercial and retail tenants will be protected from evictions under a series of measures to protect businesses and jobs. The measures will be underpinned by $400 million in land tax relief for property owners, which must be passed on to tenants. Read media release.

8 April 2020

$5.5m to boost domestic violence services during CVID-19 pandemic

The Queensland Government is taking urgent action to support domestic and family violence victims with the immediate injection of almost $5.5 million to help manage an anticipated increase in demand for services arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the media release.

7 April 2020

COVID-19 support for Queenslanders with disability

Queenslanders with disability are being supported through the COVID-19 outbreak, with the Queensland Government and partner organisations working together to ensure vital services remain available and key information is accessible. Queenslanders with disability, who don’t have carers, family or friends to assist them, are encouraged to phone the Community Recovery Hotline on 1800 173 349 to request essential food, household items, and medicines. Read the media release.

26 March 2020

State Government joins forces with industry to support small business

The state government is increasing its efforts to help small business during the COVID-19 pandemic by partnering with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) to deliver widespread assistance throughout the state. Read the media release.

24 March 2020

Palaszczuk Government unveils $4 billion package to support health, jobs, households and Queensland businesses

The state government will invest an additional $4 billion in measures to support Queenslanders’ health, their jobs and businesses. 

As part of the Queensland Government's COVID-19 economic relief package, all Queensland households will receive a $200 rebate (including the $50 Asset Ownership Dividend already announced) to offset the cost of water and electricity bills. The rebate will be automatically applied through household electricity bills. Read the media release.

Jobs support

Applications are open for Queensland COVID-19 jobs support loans for Queensland businesses and non-profit organisations financially affected by COVID-19 to retain employees and maintain their operations. Apply online

The Queensland Government's small business hotline is providing support to help small businesses and not-for-profits including case management and referrals to financial mentoring and business planning.

Call the small business hotline on 1300 654 687.

Queensland Department of Health

Queensland Health website is the best source of health information for Queenslanders. For the most recent media release visit the Queensland Health media release page.

31 March 2020

Home confinement directions

All people must stay in their homes except for: shopping for essentials - food and necessary supplies; medical or health care needs, including compassionate requirements; exercise with no more than one other person (unless from your household); providing care or assistance to an immediate family member; and work and study if you can’t work or learn remotely. This direction applies to all residents of Queensland. Read the full statement.

Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women

The Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women is working with peak bodies and service providers on the best ways to provide essential services as safely as possible. This may mean changes to how services are delivered. To support funded service providers and foster and kinship carers the department has provided answers to some of the most frequently asked questions relating to COVID-19. Find out more here.

Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors

COVID-19 and the Human Services Quality Framework (HSQF) 

Organisations may be experiencing challenges meeting HSQF timeframes as a result of COVID-19 impacts and supports flexibility where possible. Visit the website for more information.

QCOSS updates

As the peak body for social services in Queensland, QCOSS is committed to ensuring the wellbeing of every person, in every community in Queensland. As community services focus on how we continue to provide essential service to support people and communities during this crisis QCOSS will keep you up to date with what is happening in the sector.

Read updates from QCOSS

COSS network COVID-19 information for people in other states

 

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Queensland Government media release Queensland primary producers will have extra time to lodge drought assistance claims and are being urged to apply electronically due to the impact of COVID-19 on claim processing times. Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner...
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Thriving Communities Partnership (TCP) will be kicking off the first installment of the TCP Connect Weekly Webinars, o n 8 April 2020. The first series 'Navigating COVID Together Series' will contain 45 minutes of conversations with leaders from across sectors to discuss topics, including...
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Workplaces across Australia are innovating in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic - with many transitioning to operating in a virtual environment as employees begin to work from home. It can be a learning curve for some people working from home for the first time but thankfully there are some really...
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Youth Affairs Network Queensland (YANQ) is asking for responses to undertake informed advocacy on issues impacting the youth sector and lobby for extra supports needed during the COVID-19 crisis. If you wish to raise various concerns about continuity of service to marginalised young people, have...
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Early Childhood Australia (ECA) has assembled a straight-forward guide and resources to assist with discussing the COVID-19 pandemic with children. ECA recognise that young children around Australia are at different stages of understanding COVID-19, and need appropriate age-based responses. They...
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Although remote working is not new for many employees, some departments have never had a requirement to operate in this way. Is your organisation prepared to run business-critical processes remotely? The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) has published a series of webinars designed...
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Queenslanders with Disability Network (QDN) is working with the Queensland Government to ensure Queenslanders with disability can get the information, resources and tools they need to prepare for this evolving COVID-19 pandemic. They have released a suite of resources and tools to give people with...
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2020 has been characterised by great challenges to our collective wellbeing. In the wake of Australia’s devastating bushfires, COVID-19 is now rattling our global community. This is a time to practice caution and self-care, and an opportunity for our communities to learn a lot about looking after...
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Red Cross Australia has assembled a helpful guide to help you speak to children and young people about the COVID-19 pandemic. Like adults, children are navigating something they have never experienced before. Finding the right way to talk to them about COVID-19 can help protect children and reduce...
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Queensland Government media release The Queensland Government is increasing its efforts to help small business during the COVID-19 pandemic by partnering with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) to deliver widespread assistance throughout the state. Minister for Employment and...

Pages

A central point where you can find information and support on the COVID-19 changes affecting renting in Queensland. An initiative of the Queensland Government in collaboration with RTA, Tenants Queensland and REIQ. The hub includes: Information for renters Information for property owners...
This 30-minute online training module is for health care workers in all settings. It covers the fundamentals of infection prevention and control for COVID-19. This training module covers the fundamentals of infection prevention and control for COVID-19 including: COVID-19 – what is it? Signs and...
Insight centre for alcohol and other drug training has developed a toolkit for remote alcohol and other drug (AOD) counselling service delivery. The toolkit contains mobile apps, interactive websites and downloadable worksheets that can be used to enhance telephone or online-based AOD counselling...
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) has published a series of webinars designed to support businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Topics include: Is your business ready or prepared for remote working environments? Be practically prepared State and Federal Government resources...
The following fact sheets provide more information about financial assistance to support individuals and households through Coronavirus. Income support for individuals - eligibility information about income support payments and the Coronavirus supplement to be paid at a rate of $550 per fortnight...
Oneplace Find help near you. Search more than 53,000 Queensland family community services at oneplace . Department of Social Services The Department of Social Services provides a search function to find your nearest emergency relief provider . Ask Izzy Ask Izzy is a mobile website that connects...
Thriving Communities Partnership (TCP) provides a COVID-19 pandemic resource platform that includes response packages, support and information available from TCP partners and other organisations across Australia. More information here
You can download a business continuity plan template here or a template for a disaster plan for community organisations here . If you don’t already have a formal business continuity plan in place, or you need to update it, visit the Business continuity page for more information on what to include...
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Author: 
Samuel Mortimer, QCOSS

Workplaces across Australia are innovating in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic - with many transitioning to operating in a virtual environment as employees begin to work from home.

It can be a learning curve for some people working from home for the first time, but...

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