Homelessness Week 2018

06 August 2018

The Turnbull Government cannot continue to ignore the homelessness and housing affordability crisis gripping the country, the Member for Macarthur, Dr Mike Freelander MP, has said.

With Homelessness Week 2018 (August 6-12) starting today, Malcolm Turnbull must outline his plans to address the 116,000 Australians who are homeless on any given night.

“On Census night in 2016, more than 116,000 of our fellow Australians were homeless – an increase of more than 13 per cent in the period since the 2011 Census. In NSW the 2016 Census revealed 37,715 people were experiencing homelessness.”

The number of older women and young people experiencing homelessness continues to rise across every jurisdiction in Australia.

Dr Freelander said the Turnbull Government does not even have a dedicated housing and homelessness minister, highlighting its indifference to this complex social issue.

“Housing affordability is just getting worse and it is widening intergenerational inequality,” Dr Mike Freelander MP said.
“The more unaffordable housing is, the more likely those at the bottom of the market fall into housing stress and homelessness. 

“Meanwhile, Malcolm Turnbull wants to give big banks and multinational companies an $80 billion tax cut, further increasing inequality in Australia.”
If elected, Labor will:

  • Develop and implement a national plan to reduce homelessness through the Council of Australian Governments.
  • Provide $88 million over two years for a new Safe Housing Fund to increase transitional housing options for women and children escaping domestic and family violence, young people exiting out-of-home care and older women on low incomes who are at risk of homelessness.
  • Reinstate a Minister for Housing and Homelessness, and re-establish the National Housing Supply Council.
  • Reform negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions, along with other reforms to improve housing supply and affordability.

“If Mr Turnbull put half the effort into housing and homelessness that he does trying implement tax cuts for his mates at the big end of town, Australia would be a much fairer place to live,” Dr Freelander said.