Identifying and definitional attributes
|Metadata item type:||Data Set Specification|
|Registration status:||Homelessness, Standard 10/08/2018|
|DSS type:||National Minimum Data Set (NMDS)|
The Specialist Homelessness Services National Minimum Data Set (SHS NMDS) aims to provide quality information about people who are either homeless or at risk of homelessness and who are seeking services from specialist homelessness agencies.
This collection is intended to obtain information about clients receiving ongoing or short-term support, as well as people who are seeking assistance but did not receive any services. Data collection includes basic socio-demographic information and the services required by and provided to each client. Details about accompanying children are also recorded. Additionally, information is obtained about the client circumstances before, during and after receiving support.
The base unit of this collection is a person who presents to a Specialist Homelessness Services (SHS) agency requesting a service or services. A person becomes a client once they receive a service or services. The period of time a client receives assistance from a SHS agency is commonly referred to as a support period. It relates to the provision of assistance and/or supported accommodation. A support period is considered finished when the relationship between the client and the agency ends or the client has reached their maximum amount of support.
During a support period there are, in most cases, a series of service episodes or assistance, other than supported accommodation, provided to the client by the SHS agency. For the purposes of the SHS NMDS, assistance also includes contact with a client, or work on behalf of a client.
The SHS NMDS has three ‘views’ for collection purposes, they are: Unassisted person, Client and Specialist homelessness agency.
An ‘Unassisted person’ in the context of this collection is any person who seeks assistance from an agency and is not successful in obtaining that assistance. A ‘Client’ is a person who receives services either directly or indirectly from an agency. A 'Specialist homelessness agency' is an organisation which receives government funding to deliver a specialist homelessness service to a client.
The SHS NMDS provides for information to be collected for each person who seeks services, irrespective of whether they are on their own or part of a family or other group. The ‘Presenting unit’ describes a single person or a group of people, and the relationship between members presenting for services. The ‘Presenting unit head’ describes a person in the ‘Presenting unit’ used to determine how people within the group are related.
Collection and usage attributes
|Guide for use:|
For jurisdictions who have high volume central intake or localised entry point agencies (for example Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory), data for unmet demand and unassisted requests for services are not directly comparable with other states and territories.
The 2011 SHS NMDS was developed to support the collection of data under the Intergovernmental Agreement on Federal Financial Relations for Homelessness. It replaced the Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP) collection from July 2011.
In 2008 the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed to reform federal financial relations to improve the quality and effectiveness of government services. These reforms led to the establishment of the National Affordable Housing Agreement (NAHA) and the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH), which includes specific performance measures in relation to homelessness.
In conjunction with these reforms, the Australian Government initiated a comprehensive policy review, setting out a national approach to reducing homelessness in the White Paper: The Road Home, A National Approach to Reducing Homelessness.
The SHS NMDS 2019- continues to reflect the outcome based performance framework promoted by the COAG Reforms and White Paper. It supports the collection, analysis and reporting of client-based data. This allows for the production of statistical information about clients’ circumstances, the assistance they receive and the outcomes that are achieved for them. This information can be used to inform policy design, evaluation, service improvement and monitoring of specialist homelessness services in Australia.
The collection has developed over time to provide improved information about clients of SHS agencies. Changes in 2013 provided for the collection of information about clients with disabilities. Following this, in 2017 changes enabled the collection of data about clients who are former or current members of the Australian Defence Force.
The SHS NMDS 2019- provides for further collection enhancements including:
Source and reference attributes
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
|Related metadata references:|
See also SAAP Administrative National Minimum Data Set (NMDS) Community Services (retired), Retired 01/07/2011
Supersedes Specialist Homelessness Services NMDS 2017-19 Homelessness, Superseded 10/08/2018