No room at the inn for women and children this Christmas

News | Dec 18, 2019

New AIHW homelessness data showing that 254 Australians will be turned away from homelessness services every day during the Christmas season highlights how services are struggling to cope with growing homelessness and demand for social housing

The AIHW data shows that:

  • Every-day homelessness services are forced to turn away 254 people asking for help. 
  • 3 out of 5 people who are homeless and seeking help aren’t housed because there isn’t enough social housing
  • In the last year 215,373 women and children sought homelessness help – almost 50,000 of them younger than nine years old.
  • Last year 43,000 Australians aged 15-24 turned up at homelessness services alone asking for help.

Everybody’s Home campaign spokesperson Kate Colvin said the data shows it is time for urgent national intervention to address homelessness.

“The upcoming holidays should be a time for friends and family,” Ms Colvin said.

“But while many Australians and most or our politicians are sitting down to Christmas lunch, there is a growing number of people who won’t even have a home to celebrate in. 

“This new data shows that our homelessness support services are struggling with demand, and there just isn’t the housing for people who ask for help.

“Quite literally this Christmas, for many Australians there will be no room at the inn.”

Ms Colvin said many local MPs would be shocked at the level of homelessness in their local communities and the number of people struggling to keep a roof over their head.

“Australia desperately needs more social housing for people who can’t afford private rental,” she said.

“And we need the Federal Government to bring everyone, states, territories and people with experience of homelessness together to work on a bipartisan plan that will make sure that everybody has a home.”           

Media enquiries: Jenny Stokes 0478 504 280

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