Reduce Homelessness


A Shorten Labor Government will develop and implement a national plan to reduce homelessness through the Council of Australian Governments.

Australia is in the midst of a homelessness crisis. The 2016 Census and data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare have revealed more Australians than ever before are at-risk of or experiencing homelessness.

On Census night in 2016 more than 116,000 Australians were experiencing homelessness – a staggering increase of more than 13 per cent in the period since the 2011 Census.  Troublingly, for groups such as older women and young people, the rates of increase were even higher.

The Coalition Government has failed to respond to the homelessness crisis – instead cutting $44 million a year in capital funding for transitional housing in its 2014/15 Budget  and failing to tackle the affordability crisis across the housing spectrum placing vulnerable Australians at risk of homelessness.



A Shorten Labor Government will immediately commence work with the states and territories on a national plan to address the issue of rising homelessness and directly invest in the supply of new affordable rental housing and transitional housing for vulnerable groups.

Labor will:

  • Develop and implement a national plan to reduce homelessness through the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).
  • Build 250,000 new affordable rental homes over ten years – helping priority groups at-risk of experiencing homelessness to secure long-term, affordable, and stable accommodation.
  • Invest $88 million over two years for a new Safe Housing Fund to increase transitional housing options for women and children escaping domestic and family violence, young people exiting out-of-home care and older women on low incomes who are at risk of homelessness.
  • Reinstate a Minister for Housing and Homelessness, and re-establish the National Housing Supply Council.
  • Reform negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions, along with other reforms to improve housing supply and affordability.

We will pay for it by making multinationals pay their fair share and closing tax loopholes used by the top end of town.