CHRONIC HOUSING STRESS AND HOMELESSNESS IN AUSTRALIA NEEDS ATTENTION FROM TURNBULL GOVERNMENT

Today the St Vincent de Paul Society released a report which outlines the impact that the affordable housing crisis in Australia is having on low income households across the country.

The Ache for Home report shows 105,000 people are experiencing homelessness and more than 157,000 Australian households are paying over 50% of their income in rent and living in unaffordable housing.

Key findings of the report include:

  •  On most recent estimates, 857,000 Australians are experiencing housing stress
  •  Indigenous Australians are 15 times more likely to be sleeping rough than non-indigenous Australians
  •  domestic violence is a factor in 36% of homelessness cases 
  •  217,000 families were on the public housing waiting list in 2014. 

Data like this can’t be ignored by the Turnbull Government and it is more important than ever that the Prime Minister prioritise housing affordability and work with the states, territories and non-government organisations to co-ordinate a national response to these shocking statistics.

The Coalition have spent the entire term of government ignoring the growing problem of housing affordability and have only recently established a working group of departmental bureaucrats to tell them how to approach the problem.

The statistics contained in the report released today, confirming what many other reports have also found, tell us that the time for working groups has passed. 

What’s needed now is action and solutions.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull needs to show some leadership and release policies to relieve housing stress and the growing rates of homelessness in Australia. 

WEDNESDAY, 2 MARCH 2016

Senator Katy Gallagher is Labor's Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Shadow Minister for Housing and Homelessness and the Shadow Minister Assisting the Leader on State and Territory Relations