Home­less lev­els rise

Herald Sun - - NEWS - ED GAR­DINER

HOME­LESS­NESS is ris­ing in Vic­to­ria, with women and older peo­ple in­creas­ingly at risk, new cen­sus fig­ures re­veal.

Al­most 25,000 Vic­to­ri­ans were home­less in 2016 — an 11 per cent in­crease since 2011.

There also has been a 23 per cent in­crease in home­less­ness for peo­ple over 55, with women dis­pro­por­tion­ately af­fected.

The fig­ures should serve as a “wake-up call” to gov­ern­ments, ac­cord­ing to the peak body for home­less­ness.

Coun­cil to Home­less Per­sons chief ex­ec­u­tive Jenny Smith called for mas­sive fed­eral in­vest­ment.

“The in­crease in home­less­ness is no sur­prise given that as a coun­try, we’ve failed to tackle the hous­ing af­ford­abil­ity cri­sis, and our home­less­ness ser­vices con­tinue to be chron­i­cally un­der­funded,” she said.

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