The St Vincent de Paul Society calls on all state and territory governments to take a national approach to address the homelessness crisis in Australia by signing onto the two-year National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH) recently announced by the Federal Government.

St Vincent de Paul Society Chief Executive, Dr John Falzon said: “We urge our political leaders across Australia to commit not just to an NPAH, which would allow frontline services to plan for the future, but to also make a commitment to keeping homelessness on the national agenda. There is no place for homelessness in a prosperous country,” Dr Falzon said.

On 23 March, 2015 the St Vincent de Paul Society supported a National Day of Action to highlight the crisis in affordable housing, and the federal funding cuts to homelessness peak bodies. Homelessness Australia, Shelter Australia and the Community Housing Federation of Australia, continue to face an uncertain future after losing federal government funding, which is due to expire by 30 June, 2015.

“These peak bodies play an important advocacy role and without them the voice of people experiencing homelessness and housing stress will be severely diminished,” Dr Falzon said. “If we are serious about ending homelessness in Australia we need to support peak bodies and to invest in social and public housing initiatives.” the facts

There are over 105, 000 people experiencing homelessness in prosperous Australia each night. The following case study demonstrates that homelessness can happen to anyone.

Claire and Matthew lived at a country caravan park in their hometown. When Claire had to be flown to a capital city to undergo an emergency caesarean section, Matthew asked the manager of the caravan park if they could leave their belongings in their van until they returned. He had no idea how long this would be. The caravan park manager demanded they pay four weeks rent in advance to secure their van. Matthew had no money and could not meet this demand and as a result, their van was emptied of all their belongings. They are now homeless.

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Vinnies CEO Sleepout 2016

The 2016 Vinnies CEO Sleepout raised close to $6 million nationally, with 1475 CEOs taking part. It was held in major metropolitan and regional cities on 23 June (Adelaide event was on 16 June). 

The event is a unique way for business leaders to actively combat the issue of homelessness by rising to the challenge and experiencing a small dose of what it is like to sleep rough for one night. The night is an experiential, no frills affair with CEOs given nothing more than a beanie, a sheet of cardboard, and a cup of soup.

Planning is now underway for the CEO Sleepout 2017. To register, visit our CEO Sleepout website.


Twitter:  @CEOSleepout 

Hashtags: #CEOSleepoutAU and #newchapter

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