On November 13th, Rachel Brown, in the Sydney Morning Herald, reported an 8% increase in homelessness between 2006 and 2011.
The Herald reported data from the Bureau of Statistics showing:
There were 105,237 homeless people on census night last year, 60% of those under under 35. Homelessness rose by 20% or more in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT. The increase was due to people sleeping in overcrowded accommodation, who accounted for 39%,compared with rough sleepers who accounted for 6%.
The term Homelessness has been the basis of major study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics which provided in 2012 a detailed Information Paper – A Statistical Definition of Homelessness.
It emphasises the difference between being homeless and roofless. Its definition takes into account the adequacy of the dwelling, the security of tenure in the dwelling and control of, and access to space for social relations.
The homeless don’t have choice in one or more of the above areas and it affects the quality of their lives. All the heads of agencies involved in caring for the homeless stated that their services were experiencing an increase in the numbers seeking to use them, and that this number seemed to be related to a chronic shortage of affordable housing.