CHP releases ‘blueprint’ for ending Victorian homelessness

Content provided by the Council to Homeless Persons.

 

Victoria’s homelessness peak, the Council to Homeless Persons, has released the Victorian Homelessness Election Platform, describing it as a ‘blueprint’ for ending homelessness in Victoria.

CHP says that with the right measures in place, ending homelessness is achievable and is calling on local candidates to show they’re serious about ending homelessness by publicly committing to the 17 proposals in the Homelessness Election Platform.

CHP produced a homelessness heat map that shows that homelessness is an issue in every single Victorian electorate. As such, addressing homelessness must be a top priority for the next State Government.

CHP’s platform says that the 69 per cent increase in stamp duty collected over the past five years ($2.8 billion) could be directed towards solving Victoria’s homelessness and affordable housing crisis.

CHP has also put together materials for those wishing to advocate for homelessness in their local electorates and to help them campaign for candidates to adopt evidenced-based solutions.

The Platform calls for action in 6 key areas:

A housing system that works

82,000 Victorians are waiting for social housing and 80% of those people are waiting for one or two bedroom properties. With more affordable housing of the right size and location, we can fix Victoria’s broken housing system.

Candidates should commit to a boost of 3,000 new public and community housing dwellings per year for 10 years, with 1,500 being one & two bedroom homes for singles, couples or small families.  Read more

Measures to prevent homelessness

While not every eviction causes homelessness, over 13,000 people came to Victorian homelessness services last year, predominantly because of an eviction.

State election candidates should pledge to stop renters being evicted into homelessness by helping them to pay back rental arrears and by providing more legal advice and support.

CHP also wants the next State Government to help people exiting prison and psychiatric care to get housing to prevent them from becoming homeless.   Read more

Closing the gap on Aboriginal homelessness

Aboriginal Victorians make up 0.8 per cent of the total population, but 9.5 per cent of all homelessness service users. This is why the next State Government must expand homelessness service delivery in prevention, early intervention, and ongoing support capacity delivered by Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations.  Read more

Intervening early to end homelessness

Preventing homelessness and assisting people to find a new permanent home will always be the main priorities of those working to end homelessness. However, when people do experience homelessness, immediate short-term crisis beds must be available, while more permanent arrangements are made.

More outreach workers are also needed for rooming houses to ensure that Victoria’s most marginalised people to live healthier lives, participate in our community more fully, and be better connected.  Read more

Ending chronic homelessness

Homelessness experts in Australia and across the world have conclusively demonstrated that the ending homelessness for people who’ve been rough sleeping long term is to provide housing and support for as long as recovery may take; an approach known as Permanent Supportive Housing or ‘Housing First’.

By building and buying more social housing, and then setting some of it aside for Housing First programs, we’ll have a much better chance of ending the homelessness cycle for Victoria’s rough sleepers.  Read more

Youth

Children experiencing homelessness don’t have the basics of a safe, permanent plac to sleep. They are often not getting enough support to stay in school, reunite with family, deal with their mental health issues and access financial assistance.

Currently, these supports are provided in an ad hoc way, and there’s no comprehensive youth homelessness strategy or framework — we’re calling for a joined-up approach.

We want rent subsidies for young people leaving refuges, programs to help homeless youth stay in education, and more youth refuges.  Read more

Click here to read all 17 proposals in CHPs Homelessness Election Platform.  If you are interested in advocating for homelessness in your local electorates, you can find resources to help campaign for candidates to adopt the Platform in the lead up to the State Election here.