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Government NSW, Youth

Monash expert: Young people left out of the NSW state budget

Monash University 2 mins read

A Monash University expert is available to comment on the New South Wales state budget, which was delivered by Treasurer Daniel Mookhey on Tuesday. Similar to the Victorian budget last month, young people have been shortchanged on key funding announcements.

Professor Lucas Walsh, Director of the Monash Centre for Youth Policy and Education Practice
Contact details: +61 468 854 755 or
Read more of Professor Walsh’s commentary at Monash Lens

The following can be attributed to Professor Walsh:

“The good news is that regional schools will be upgraded and an additional $86.9m will extend programs for young people at risk of committing crimes or reoffending.

“But for most young people, more needs to be done in three key areas: mental health, jobs and a central feature of this year's budget, housing.

“The 30,000 houses promised over four years is far less than the 70,000 needed each year, during a skills shortage while increasing land tax thresholds, continue a policy that tinkers around the edges.

“From 2021 to 2023, we’ve been surveying and interviewing young people aged 18-24 about their work, finances, education, health and wellbeing, relationships and civic participation. When the pandemic began, 31 per cent of Australia's 3.2 million young people lived in NSW – the most of any Australian state. By 2023, almost 84 per cent of young people in NSW highlighted the impact of the pandemic on their mental health – higher than the national average of 81.3 per cent. Nearly half (46 per cent) reported there was not enough government support for mental health.

“In addition, the scarring effects of pandemic lockdowns could last a decade and the ripple effects could be generational.

“More needs to be done now to address this during a critical period of young people's lives.

“Young people’s concerns, to use Treasurer Daniel Mookhey’s words, are must haves and not nice-to-haves.

“At the start of the pandemic, one million young people in NSW were aged 15–24 years. They will be voting in the next election and they urgently need mental health, accommodation and financial support.”

Professor Walsh is co-author of a recent report, The pandemic years and their impact on young people in New South Wales and Victoria.

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For any other topics on which you may be seeking expert comment, contact the Monash University Media Unit on +61 3 9903 4840 or

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