Keeping Up With Inflation: An Australian Human Services Index Framework

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Abstract

The Human Services sector faces many challenges in providing timely, appropriate services and supports. A key factor is financial capacity.
Multi-year government procurement agreements must increase in line with demand and costs associated with operations if service providers are to maintain quality and timely provision of services. This ensures the purchasing power of organisations remains adequate over time and changes in expenses are responded to.
Without appropriate funding, a lack of resources forces providers to cross the line between sufficient funding and unsustainable business methods. Cumulative effects over time create and perpetuate a starvation cycle which reduces efficiency and hinders impact of much needed services. Ultimately the service user bears this risk.
This paper identifies and critiques current indexation methods used by states and territories in Australia. Often indexation consists of a combination between of Consumer Price Index and Wage Price Index by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. We discuss the relevance of CPI and WPI to the sector and how the nature of operations and workforce demographics are not reflected. We explore the theoretical nature of cost indexation in the Not-for-Profit Sector, as well as brief economic framework in demand and supply of services.
We conclude by presenting a discussion of the Chained Fisher Index as a more appropriate method informing our Australian Human Services Index.

Conference

Conference15th Biennial Australian and New Zealand Third Sector Research Conference
Abbreviated titleANZTSR 2022
Country/TerritoryAustralia
CityPerth
Period17/11/2219/11/22
Internet address

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