Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2016) Specialist homelessness services 2015–16, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 10 August 2022.
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2016). Specialist homelessness services 2015–16. Retrieved from https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/homelessness-services/specialist-homelessness-services-2015-16
Specialist homelessness services 2015–16. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 15 December 2016, https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/homelessness-services/specialist-homelessness-services-2015-16
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Specialist homelessness services 2015–16 [Internet]. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2016 [cited 2022 Aug. 10]. Available from: https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/homelessness-services/specialist-homelessness-services-2015-16
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2016, Specialist homelessness services 2015–16, viewed 10 August 2022, https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/homelessness-services/specialist-homelessness-services-2015-16
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During 2015–16 people aged 55 or older comprised 8% of all clients (21,610 people) of specialist homelessness services. Specialist homelessness service use by this group is increasing quickly with numbers up 44% since the collection began in 2011–12 and growing at over twice the rate (18%) of the general SHS population.
Since the beginning of the SHS collection in 2011–12 the number of older clients seeking assistance from specialist homelessness services has increased at a greater rate than other age groups. Key trends identified in this client population over the 5 years are:
Source: Specialist Homelessness Services Collection 2011–12 to 2015–16.
of older clients were female in 2015–16, similar to 2014–15.
2 in 3
older clients (66%) were aged 55–64 and the remaining one-third was 65 or over.
of Indigenous clients were aged over 55 compared with 9% of non-Indigenous clients.
were living alone.
of older clients sought assistance primarily because of a housing crisis.
Other services most commonly needed by older clients were for:
All these services were requested at lower rates than the general SHS population (assistance to sustain tenancy or prevent tenancy failure or eviction 33%, material aid/brokerage 35%, short-term or emergency accommodation 38%).
Note: Excludes 'Other basic assistance', 'Advice/information', and 'Advocacy/liaison on behalf of client'.
Source: Specialist Homelessness Services 2015–16, National Supplementary Table OLDER.3.
While older clients most commonly ended their support in private or other housing (43%, or about 6,000), the proportion of older clients housed in public or community housing following support increased from 21% to 29% in 2015–16.
There was also a reduction in the proportion of older clients 'rough sleeping' (no shelter or improvised/ inadequate dwelling), falling from just over 1 in 10 clients (12%, or 1,700) at the commencement of support to 7% at the end (Figure OLDER.2).
Source: Specialist Homelessness Services 2015–16, National Supplementary Table OLDER.4.
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