The Tents In Martin Place Are Just The Tip Of The Homelessness Iceberg

Without government legislation for affordable housing targets our cities will become playgrounds for the rich.

Vinnies is making history today by taking a petition of 16,300 signatures to the NSW Parliament to have the issue of affordable housing properly debated and, hopefully, legislated.

It is estimated that 875,000 households in Australia are experiencing housing stress right now. This is unacceptable. With median house prices in Sydney over $1 million and rental prices pushing the average tenant to spend 29 percent of their income on rent, it is no surprise that Vinnies and other community sector organisations are seeing increases in demand for our services.

The effects of these mounting pressures on NSW residents are perhaps most obvious with the growing number of tents in Martin Place. The reality for most people facing homelessness, however, is not necessarily that they will end up sleeping rough but much more commonly they will be forced to sleep in their cars, crisis accomodation or a friend’s house. So the growing number of tents in Sydney is just the tip of the iceberg.

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