Australia needs a solution to homelessness

UnitingCare Australia is calling on our Federal and State Governments to urgently develop and commit to a National Housing Strategy to address the growing crisis of homelessness in Australia.

This week is National Homelessness Week. There are more than 116 000 people without a home and almost 195 000 families on social housing waiting lists across Australia.

A National Housing Strategy must clearly define the roles of all governments in increasing the supply of social and affordable housing. Investing in social housing will reduce homelessness and housing stress, bridge the gap in housing investment and assist in job creation and income growth.

A National Housing Strategy is one of the five actions in the Everybody’s Home Campaign, which focuses on housing solutions for all Australians.

Access to stable and safe housing underpins healthy communities. Australia has the resources to ensure that everyone experiences a safe and supportive community, has access to appropriate housing and is not at risk of homelessness.

UnitingCare network organisations across Australia are committed to addressing this serious issue. UnitingCare West is a member of the WA Alliance to end Homelessness which has housed more than 215 people in 174 homes since it began in 2016.

During homelessness week UnitingCare West are participating in a week-long trial to provide a dedicated safe space for people to sleep in Perth. Their Tranby Centre will be open 24/7 for men and women sleeping rough to provide a safe place to rest as well as support services to try and achieve a real change. As one of the wealthiest nations in the world, we need zero tolerance to homelessness and a commitment to this across all governments.

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