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    Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors
    The Honourable Coralee O'Rourke

    Support continuing for North Queenslanders impacted by flooding

    Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors
    The Honourable Coralee O'Rourke

    Tuesday, March 13, 2018

    Support continuing for North Queenslanders impacted by flooding

    The Palaszczuk Government is continuing to support North Queenslanders impacted by flooding, with residents directly affected continuing to receive financial assistance and support services as they begin clean-up efforts and get back on their feet.

    Communities Minister Coralee O’Rourke visited the Townsville Coordination Centre again today (13 March) and thanked the growing team of Ready Reserve staff for their efforts over the past few days to support affected communities.

    “Already, (as at 5am today) we have received close to 900 applications for Emergency Hardship grants from people who need help to buy essential items like food, clothing and medications or to help cover the costs of alternative accommodation if they can’t live at home,” Mrs O’Rourke said.

    “We have paid out a total of around $184,000 to North Queensland residents who have been affected by this flooding.

    “At the same time, the Community Recovery Hotline (1800 173 349) has received more than 880 calls since the grants were activated on Saturday.

    “These are very resilient communities, but our community recovery efforts are here to lend a helping hand and help people affected get back on their feet.”

    The Queensland Government has 122 Ready Reserves currently supporting the recovery effort.

    Mrs O’Rourke said Ready Reserve staff have been working in the Townsville Coordination Centre to lead the community recovery efforts in the region.

    “Now that the floodwaters have receded and roads are opening up, our Ready Reserves are starting to get out to some of the most affected communities, such as Ingham and some areas within Innisfail,” she said.

    “We will have more community recovery workers on the ground in the coming days to offer targeted assistance and face-to-face support to local residents.”

    These efforts are being supported by a Telephone Outreach Service being delivered by the Australian Red Cross in the Hinchinbrook local government area.

    Eligible applicants can still receive one-off Emergency Hardship grants of $180 per person, up to $900 for a family of five or more.

    Other grants such the Essential Household Contents Grant and Structural Assistance Grant, which are income tested, are also available to eligible residents in activated areas who are uninsured and have experienced certain loss or damage following this disaster.

    Financial assistance is available through the jointly-funded Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).

    People can download the Self Recovery app, go to the Community Recovery online portal at or call the Community Recovery Hotline on 1800 173 349 for more information or to apply for grants.


    Media Contact: Benjamin Mulcahy 0419 562 389