Homes for Homeless: Very Positive Much Needed Relief

Launch Housing Chief Executive Bevan Warner today welcomed the Victorian Government’s new $150 million From Homelessness to a Home package.

The funding will see the Government extend current emergency hotel and motel accommodation until April of next year, allowing 2,000 former rough sleepers to continue being supported by Launch Housing and other service providers.

The State Government has also committed to leasing more than 1,000 properties from the private rental market to provide accommodation for people once they leave emergency accommodation, as well as funding for flexible client support packages and a boosted Private Rental Assistance Program.

Launch Housing Chief Executive Bevan Warner said the package was very positive, much needed and demonstrated that homelessness is solvable.

“This will be a life-saving measure because it means the 2,000 people who were sleeping rough and are now in hotels and motels will have somewhere to ride out the pandemic at least until April, to try and stay safe,” Mr Warner said.

“They won’t have to wonder every day about what is going to happen to them, a state of anxiety which has created a ‘perfect storm’ of uncertainty and fear among this vulnerable group.

“Melbourne can be a world-leader in ending homelessness and these former rough sleepers are being given a very significant opportunity to move ahead with their lives.

“We can’t prevent every traumatic event or small business failure but if instances of homelessness are rare, if they are of short duration and don’t reoccur then we are on the way to Melbourne Zero. Zero homelessness, everyone housed.”

“We can end homelessness but not without more homes and more support. This announcement provides both.

“The imperative has never been greater as this housing crisis, turned health crisis and now economic crisis will be with us for some time.

“We now need to persuade the Federal Government to take the expert economic advice and turbocharge the recovery with more social housing, so the homes get built to avoid future instances of homelessness.

“Every serious economic commentator in the country has said that we need a lifeline for the economy and jobs and that social housing is the best way to inject that stimulus.

“Every house that gets built supports 42 trades and it costs less to solve homelessness than it does to treat homelessness in the streets.

“There’s a severe housing shortage in Australia and a rental affordability crisis that was here before the pandemic – the Federal Government can’t just leave it to the states to get on with this, when there’s a way to produce a fairer recovery at a time of great national need.”

Media contact: Luisa Saccotelli (0447) 964 899.

About Launch Housing
Launch Housing is a Melbourne based, secular and independent community agency whose mission is to end homelessness. It provides high quality housing, support, education and employment services to thousands of people across 14 sites in metropolitan Melbourne.