Australia can reduce the number of people experiencing homelessness by half over the next 10 years, according to new analysis from Homelessness Australia.
The national peak body for homelessness services, is calling on all sides of politics to make election commitments to ending homelessness, starting with a 50% reduction by 2032.
Homelessness Australia’s election platform, released today, shows that increasing income support by $35 per day would prevent 35,800 households from experiencing homelessness this year. By 2032 this would have helped 456,400 households to avoid homelessness.
Homelessness services are also calling for more housing and support for people experiencing homelessness. 25,000 new social housing properties per year, and the Housing First programs to needed to sustain those homes and keep people well, would end 275,000 instances of homelessness, and prevent 175,000 more in the ten years to 2032.
Without these measures, the number of households without homes is expected to grow over the next decade from 165,000 to more than 220,000.
Homelessness Australia Chair Jenny Smith says, adopting these measures would have an immediate impact, preventing or ending homelessness for 60,000 households in the first year.
“In 2020, while the covid supplement increase to income support was in place, we saw a massive reduction in homelessness. We’re calling on political leaders to make that permanent,” she says.
“If the Federal Government does not act, hundreds of thousands of Australians will fall into homelessness over the next decade. If that number seems stark, it is. It shows the scale of the problem we’re facing.
“It’s time for all political parties to commit to ending homelessness. We have a choice between homelessness rates continuing to grow, or committing to the measures we’ve outlined, and reducing the number of people experiencing homelessness over the next decade by half.”