Homelessness
  • Last updated:
  • 24 Jan 2023

2018 data indicates that more than 116,000 Australians are homeless. There are also 175,000 Australians that are on social housing waiting lists. 

The main causes of homelessness are:

  • a lack of social and affordable housing
  • low rental vacancy rate
  • unaffordable rents
  • domestic and family violence
  • financial stress
  • physical, mental health and addiction. 

Definition 

A person is homeless if their current living arrangement:

  • is in an inadequate dwelling
  • has no tenure, or if their initial tenure is short and not extendable
  • does not allow them to have control of and access to space for social relations. 

Thus, homelessness includes people who are:

  • sleeping rough
  • sleeping in cars and mobile homes
  • utilising crisis and temporary accommodation
  • living in overcrowded housing
  • staying with family and friends.   

Support available 

If you are experiencing homelessness or domestic and family violence you can call:

  • Homeless Hotline: 1800 474 753
  • DVConnect: 1800 811 811 

Role of State Government 

The Queensland Government is the lead agency responsible for reducing homelessness in Queensland.

Visit Queensland Government website for more information. 

Role of Council 

Council acknowledges that homelessness requires a whole of community response to address. Council is:

  • Partnering with State Government, community services, community groups and local housing providers.
  • Supporting the Sunshine Coast Housing & Homelessness Network.
  • Providing referrals to support services to support those experiencing homelessness.
  • Raising awareness of homelessness and how the community can make a difference.
  • Publishing the Sunshine Coast Housing and Homelessness Directory that outlines support services.
  • Advocating for social, affordable and specialist housing across the region.
  • Supporting community projects to respond to homelessness. 

Council treats people experiencing homelessness with dignity and respect. And respects their right to access public space and public amenities.

Council will only engage with a person if:

  • They are in need of help.
  • There are public health and safety issues.
  • They are not complying with a relevant law or regulation.
  • Their belongings affect the use of public space or amenities. 

How you can help?

Education 

Increase your understanding and awareness of homelessness by visiting the Homelessness Australia website. 

Donate or volunteer  

Contact a service in the Sunshine Coast Housing and Homelessness Directory. Enquire about what you can donate. Many local community services and community centres are supported by volunteers. Contact a local service and offer your time, skills and support.  

Support or start a community-led initiative 

Homelessness is a complex issue that requires a whole of community response. There are various community led solutions in response to homelessness across the Sunshine Coast. If you would like to know more about how you can be involved please contact council or email commdevelopment@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au. 

Join a campaign  

Visit Homelessness Australia and Everybody’s Home campaign to learn more and become involved in campaigns to end homelessness. 

Sunshine Coast Housing and Homelessness Directory 

The Sunshine Coast Housing and Homelessness Directory[1099KB] is a pocket-sized guide. It contains details for organisations that are providing services to people:

  • at risk of homelessness
  • experiencing homelessness. 

Council developed the directory with the Sunshine Coast Housing and Homelessness Network. The directory aims to improve access to information and referrals to community services. 

For more information contact council or email commdevelopment@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au 

Homelessness Week 

Homelessness Week is held in August each year. The purpose is to raise awareness of homelessness. For more information about resources, events and how you can get involved visit Homelessness Australia website.