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Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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State and territory housing debts

Recent media reports  indicated that Senator Jacquie Lambie intended to support the Government’s (now passed) tax cuts if the Government provided further assistance to help tackle homelessness in Tasmania. In making her case, Senator Lambie referred to Tasmania’s outstanding housing debt to the Australian Government. Senator Lambie argued that the repayments and interest on this debt are detracting from the state’s ability to build further social housing and reduce housing waiting lists. Senator Lambie’s call for Australian Government assistance follows reports last month that Tasmanian’s Housing Minister, Roger Jaensch intended to approach the Government... Read more...

Homelessness in Australia, 2016 Census

On 14 March 2018, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released their homelessness estimates, based on the 2016 Census of Population and Housing. Under the ABS definition, a person is homeless if they do not have suitable accommodation alternatives and their current living arrangement:  is in a dwelling that is inadequate, or has no tenure, or if their initial tenure is short and not extendable, or does not allow them to have control of, and access to space for social relations. The key homelessness estimates from the 2016 Census are that: there were 116,427 people enumerated in the Census classified as being homeless on Census night (u... Read more...

Homelessness in Australia - official ABS estimates

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has for the first time released official estimates of the prevalence of homelessness in Australia. The estimates, which are based on the ABS’s new definition of homelessness and methodology for estimating homelessness using census data, are provided for homelessness at the time of the 2001 and 2006 censuses. Estimates from the 2011 census are to be published on 12 November 2012. The ABS found that, as at the 2006 census, 89 728 Australians were homeless. This represents 0.5 per cent of the Australian population at that time and a rate of 45 homeless people for every 10 000 persons. At the 2001 census, the ABS estimates that 95 314 people were homeles... Read more...

National Homeless Persons' Week

This week is National Homeless Persons’ Week. The theme title this year, MY Address: diversity in homelessness, seeks to draw attention to the many different people who are homeless for many different reasons. A previous FlagPost briefly considered the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) current review of the way in which homeless people are counted in Australia. This review proposed a number of changes to the Counting the Homeless methodology with a view to improving estimates of the number of homeless Australians. The ABS has already introduced some initiatives that should help to improve the enumeration of the homeless population in the 2011 Census, to be conducted next Tuesday. Thes... Read more...

Re-counting the homeless

  Counting the Homeless reports provide the most comprehensive picture of homelessness in Australia today. However, recently the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released a discussion paper that calls into question the methodology underpinning Counting the Homeless figures. In the paper, the ABS proposes a new methodology for estimating the number of homeless Australians which, if it were implemented, would result in a statistically significant reduction in the estimate of homeless Australians.For example, applying the ABS’s proposed methodology to 2006 census data reduces the number of homeless people by around 40 per cent, from 104 676 to 63 472 people. Using the methodology on 20... Read more...

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