Homelessness and Older Australians, Scoping the Issues

Petersen, M. and Jones, A. University of Queensland, Institute for Social Science Research

People aged 55 and over constitute approximately one-fifth of Australia’s homeless population, and there is a large, but unquantified, number of older Australians at risk of homelessness due to their precarious housing circumstances.

This research project, funded under the 2009-13 National Homelessness Research Agenda, examines the nature and extent of homelessness in Australia’s older population and considers the policy, practice and research responses that are required for this population group if the Australian Government’s long-term goals to halve the rate of homelessness are to be achieved.

This report has scoped the main issues involved in responding effectively to the issue of homelessness and older Australians, primarily relying on readily available secondary sources. The report identifies the broad contours of this issue.

Further research to be undertaken as part of this project has the potential to provide the evidence required to underpin the development of national and state strategies targeted on reducing homelessness amongst older Australians in the decade ahead.

Below are links to the Full Report and an Evidence Note that provides a summary of the report findings.

Full Report [PDF - 544KB] [DOCX - 619KB]

Evidence Note [PDF - 52KB] [DOCX - 140KB]