Anyone can experience homelessness
No one is immune from becoming homeless. Studies have shown that just a few unfortunate events can turn someone’s life around completely. It may be the loss of a job or partner, an unexpected expense or an eviction at short notice.
Key causes of homelessness
There is a major shortage in the supply of social and affordable housing across Australia. This lack of supply means that more and more people are at risk of or falling into homelessness every day. People living on low incomes or living in poverty are at greatest risk.
Housing ends homelessness. The good news is that most people’s homelessness can be solved with access to safe, secure and affordable housing.
It’s up to State, Territory and Federal Governments to increase the supply of housing. However, as voters, we need to make sure our governments know that it is an important issue for all of us.
People who experience chronic homelessness are some of the most disadvantaged people in our country. They often have complex health needs such as a chronic illness, disability, mental illness and traumatic brain injury. People experiencing chronic homelessness are at risk of an early death, as their health declines while homeless.
Solutions to chronic homelessness: Housing First
For people experiencing chronic homelessness, permanent housing and access to support can end their homelessness. This solution is called Housing First, because without a safe, secure home, it’s impossible to address any other challenges in your life.
The economic case for solving homelessness
Studies have shown that it is cheaper to house and support people experiencing chronic homelessness than it is to leave them on the streets. They can be heavy users of crisis services, emergency departments, acute hospital admissions, crisis mental health care, detoxification centres as well as police responses, ambulances, court and prison costs all add to the total cost and tragedy of chronic homelessness.