Focus needed to break homelessness cycle

This week is Homelessness Prevention Week and in the Legislative Assembly tomorrow I’ll be calling on the Barr government to develop a realistic framework by October this year, to address Canberra’s housing crisis, Shadow Minister for Housing Nicole Lawder said today.

“Having affordable housing, addressing long public housing waiting lists and targeting support that enables people to sustain their tenancies are the areas that need work if the cycle of homelessness is to be broken in Canberra,” Ms Lawder said.

“More than 1700 people are experiencing homelessness in the ACT and many more are at risk. Being homeless creates a plethora of issues both for the individuals involved as well as the entire community.

“Homelessness contributes to long term unemployment and chronic ill-health. Research even suggests the cost of sleeping rough is more than $27,000 per person per year.

“The government should make it a priority to make housing more affordable and reduce the public housing list. We are the national capital and the ACT government should lead the country by example in breaking the homelessness cycle,” Ms Lawder concluded.