OLDER WOMEN’S HOMELESSNESS SHAMES TURNBULL GOVERNMENT

23 Oct 2017

The rising number of older women experiencing homelessness and housing stress is a problem that the Turnbull government has ignored for far too long. Their failure to act is causing unnecessary hardship for individuals and families, while contributing to a crisis in affordability that affects the entire community.

SENATOR THE HON DOUG CAMERON

SHADOW MINISTER FOR HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR SKILLS AND APPRENTICESHIPS

OLDER WOMEN’S HOMELESSNESS SHAMES TURNBULL GOVERNMENT 

The rising number of older women experiencing homelessness and housing stress is a problem that the Turnbull government has ignored for far too long. Their failure to act is causing unnecessary hardship for individuals and families, while contributing to a crisis in affordability that affects the entire community.

The Liberals cut $44 million in capital funding per year for emergency and transitional housing in the 2014/15 Budget.

The Turnbull government has failed to implement a national plan to address homelessness and the housing affordability crisis. It is over four months since they announced a new National Housing and Homelessness Agreement, but there has been no plan agreed.

For Assistant Minister Zed Selselja to now claim the government has increased funding is outrageous, when specialist homeless service providers are forced to turn away 275 people, 177 of whom are women, seeking assistance every day.

A Shorten Labor Government will 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.

Labor‘s $88 million commitment forms part of our housing affordability plan which will reform negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions and remove distortions in the rental market. Labor will also negotiate nationwide tenancy law reform which will help older women maintain secure tenancies.

The government should immediately match Labor’s $88 million commitment and reach a new housing agreement with the states and territories, but they are too consumed by internal divisions to focus on the issues that really matter to Australians.

MONDAY, 23 OCTOBER 2017