11-17 October is Anti-Poverty Week and this year the campaign is calling for more affordable housing to address an underlying cause of poverty in Australia.

Partnering with the Everybody’s Home campaign, Anti-Poverty Week recognises more affordable housing and a permanent increase to Newstart (now JobSeeker) as the best ways to reduce poverty.

The Raise the Rate campaign led by ACOSS aims to ensure that unemployment payments never go back to $40 a day. Anti-Poverty Week (link) campaigners say: “JobSeeker at around $40 a day traps people in extreme poverty, unable to eat properly or pay their housing, medical and other basic expenses. Employers say it also acts as a brake on job search.”

Bridge Housing CEO John Nicolades said: “We know how critical secure and affordable housing is ensuring people do not live in poverty. Bridge Housing actively engages in and proudly supports Anti-Poverty Week every year. This year it is particularly pertinent, as addressing homelessness and increasing affordable housing supply for the vulnerable in our community are Bridge’s core business.”

“COVID-19 has brought these issues to the fore. Yes, we are all in this together, but the impacts of COVID-19 fall disproportionately on low income households, particularly women.  We are delighted by the NSW Government’s 2020 Budget commitment in November to creating more social housing as part of the State’s economic stimulus program and look forward to seeing more detail and the role of the community housing sector in delivering the stimulus package.”

Did you know?

  • More than 3.24 million people, or 13.6% of the population, live below the poverty line.
  • At least 116,000 Australians are homeless on any given night and 190,000 households are on waiting lists for social housing.
  • There is a national shortage of 433,000 homes for people in the lowest 20% of household incomes who are either homeless or in rental stress and at high risk of becoming homeless.
  • 2 out of 5 people facing homelessness were young people under the age of 25.

Visit the Anti-Poverty Week website to learn more.