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Spotlight on housing kicks off week about homelessness

Spotlight on housing kicks off week about homelessness

Auckland’s Housing Call to Action group has chosen to highlight the plight of “the hidden homeless” during Spotlight on Housing week from 5 - 10 October 2015, which culminates with World Homelessness Day on Saturday 10 October.

The week comprises a series of events, activities and competitions with the aim of raising the profile of housing and homelessness as important issues for New Zealand society. It kicks off on Monday morning 5 October at 8am with a Tent City and Sausage Sizzle in central Henderson opposite the District Court.

There are a variety of other events, displays and art exhibitions happening. Full details are available on the Housing Call to Action Facebook Page and entries in the Haiku Poetry competition are also posted there.

Facts on homelessness:

• In New Zealand about 1 in every 120 people are homeless;

• About half of the homeless adults are in employment or studying;

• Most homeless people in New Zealand are under the age of 25;

• Those sleeping on the street (rough sleepers) are the tip of the iceberg –families make up the majority of NZ’s homeless. Homelessness is far bigger than the visible homelessness;

• Auckland has about half of those waiting for Social Housing;

• There are at least 20,000 severely housing deprived people in Auckland;

• People living in overcrowded and/or substandard housing have a high rate of hospital admissions and primary health related issues;

• Henderson-Massey Local Board area has the highest number of people in the Auckland area registered for Social Housing who are at risk with a severe and persistent housing need that needs to be addressed immediately;

• The price of rent is increasing faster than pay increases;

• The hidden homeless are those people living in cars, in garages, sleep-outs, couch surfing or in overcrowded homes, often with several families sharing a dwelling. Recent census data suggest there could be up to 20,000 people living in these conditions currently in Auckland.

ENDS

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