In response to new data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), which shows increased demand for Specialist Housing Services in NSW, NSW Greens spokesperson on Housing Jenny Leong MP, says urgent action is needed to address homelessness and housing affordability.
“The increase in demand for Specialists Homelessness Services is stark evidence of the housing affordability crisis we’re facing in NSW,” she said.
“It’s devastating to know that people in desperate need of housing are being turned away because services simply can’t cope with demand. Specialist Homelessness Services must be properly resourced, both to help people find housing when they need it and also to help people at risk to stay in their homes when they’re struggling.”
“The current services helping young people, women escaping domestic violence, and people with disabilities are inadequate. The data shows that demand from each of those groups continues to grow while resources are being cut.”
“The connection between the housing affordability crisis and increasing demand for homelessness services is clear. Unless we make big inroads to dealing with this problem by setting significant targets for low-cost rental accommodation in new developments and providing security of tenure for renters we’re going to see more and more people struggling.”
“While it’s proving harder and harder for a young person to own their own home, the end result cannot be that they find themselves couch surfing or sleeping rough. All people should have the right to safe, secure affordable housing and it’s the government’s responsibility to ensure this.”
Homelessness NSW has provided a review of the data relating to NSW here.