Housing and homelessness
Housing affordability and homelessness are important issues facing disadvantaged people in Queensland. Housing is a complex system of inter-connecting causes and effects.
The shortage of affordable private and social housing in Queensland makes it difficult for low income households to secure affordable housing while meeting the rising cost of essential goods and services.
Access to affordable housing is the foundation on which Queenslanders build stable and productive lives. Stable housing positively influences health, education, employment, economic and social participation outcomes.
In the 2016 census there were 21,671 people experiencing homelessness in this state. Reasons that people find themselves in this situation include accommodation issues, financial difficulties, domestic violence and relationship issues, lack of support, discrimination, mental health and substance abuse issues.
In this section you will find current news, resources and other information relevant to those working in the housing and homelessness sector.
Key organisations in Queensland’s housing and homelessness sector
Council to Homeless Persons Queensland (CHPQ) is a collaboration of homelessness services in the southern part of Queensland, based in Brisbane.
They actively participate in the National Council to Homeless Persons and they are a members of the peak body, Homelessness Australia. They aim to provide a collective voice for homelessness services and service users and to advocate for positive social change in the area of homelessness.
Q Shelter – Queensland Shelter Incorporated (Q Shelter) was founded over thirty years ago and works to lead the sector in solutions that address the housing and homelessness needs of vulnerable Queenslanders. Q Shelter’s vision is that every Queenslander has a home. Q Shelter works to build sector capacity and shape policy and programs with the goal of achieving housing and homelessness solutions.
Micah Projects provides a range of support and advocacy services to individuals and families according to their needs and capacity. They work to break down barriers that exclude people from housing, healthcare, employment, meaningful connections and to give people a voice.
Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) is a national research organisation, specialising in housing and urban research and policy. Through active engagement, AHURI’s work informs the policies and practices of governments and the housing and urban development industries, and stimulates debate in the broader Australian community.
AHURI does this by:
- influencing policy development and practice change
- delivering high quality evidence
- maximising value for stakeholders
- building research capability and national capacity
They undertake evidence-based policy development on a range of issues, including housing and labour markets; urban growth and renewal; planning and infrastructure development; housing supply and affordability; homelessness; economic productivity; and social cohesion and wellbeing.
Tenants Queensland formerly Tenants’ Union of Queensland) was established in 1986 and seeks to represent the concerns of all Queensland tenants who live in rental accommodation, including caravan park and boarding house residents.
For many years Tenants Queensland has performed an important role for Queensland tenants; providing specialist advice services for tenants, advocating on behalf of tenants and securing improvements to Queensland’s residential tenancy laws.
Queensland Youth Housing Coalition is a statewide coalition of organisations and individuals advocating for and with disadvantaged, marginalised and homeless young people and supporting the services that work with them.
QYHC has a number of functions:
- Acts as an information resource for young people and those involved in young people’s housing and related issues
- Provides information and training through forums and workshops
- Networks with other peak bodies and statewide organisations
- Educates and assists local communities to assess young people’s housing needs and to develop appropriate youth housing policy
- Initiates and participates in research projects
- Advocates on behalf of young people
- Participates in national issues through involvement with the National Youth Coalition for Housing (NYCH) and Homelessness Australia
Residential Tenants Authority (RTA) administers the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Act 2008 and is responsible to the Minister for Housing and Public Works. It is a self-funding statutory authority, which operates on income generated from interest earned on bonds held.
Department of Housing and Public Works looks after housing and homelessness services in Queensland.
Housing and Homelessness Services plays an important role in providing housing assistance to people who need it most. Housing and Homeless Services support a social housing system that provides safe, secure, affordable and appropriate housing which improves the lives of Queenslanders.
Housing and Homelessness Services delivers a range of housing assistance services through government-owned and managed social housing, and grant funding to registered providers of community and local government-managed social housing. We also work to help people access and sustain housing in the private rental market, through bond loans, rental grants, RentConnect, the National Rental Affordability Scheme and the Tenant Advice and Advocacy Service.
By taking a responsive, integrated and flexible service approach in developing solutions to meet housing needs, Housing and Homelessness Services aims to contribute to individual, family, and community sustainability.
Human Rights impacts on the sector
QCOSS is partnering with the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy (DCHDE) and the housing and homelessness sector to build understanding of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), increase confidence to work compatibly with the Act, and support the sector to use the Act for person-centred service delivery.
Over the life of the project, QCOSS will deliver a range of engagement activites to support the housing and homelessness sector to act compatibly with the Act and increase human rights literacy. This work includes: a series of workshops, an online discussion forum, one-on-one support, and a human rights Community of Practice.