As wages fail to catch up to rising housing costs, thousands more are seeking help
The number of employed Australians seeking help for homelessness has jumped by almost 30% in three years, sparking concerns that stagnant wage growth and high housing costs are pushing workers to the brink.
The Victorian-based Council to Homeless Persons has released an analysis showing 20,302 employed Australians sought homelessness support in 2016-17, well up from 15,931 in 2013-14.
The council has blamed the rise on a combination of sluggish wage growth and extreme housing costs. On Wednesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics released the latest wage data, which showed wages grew by just 2.1% last year. Housing costs grew by 3.4% in the same period.
That’s only adding to the profound pressure on people like Mim, who works in out-of-home care in Victoria. Mim, who only has one name, fled a violent relationship many years ago, taking her three children with her. She immediately found herself homeless.
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