Yarra Ranges is currently in a housing affordability crisis. Housing affordability leads to homelessness. We currently have one of the lowest levels in Melbourne of both private rental properties and social housing. There is also no emergency housing available and very little housing options for people on low incomes.
There is a large number of people sleeping rough (without shelter) in cars and park. There is also a large amount of people couch-surfing or in other insecure forms of accommodation.
The combined rate of homelessness and other marginal housing in Yarra Ranges rose by 19% between 2016 and 2021 – a total of 756 people. Homelessness alone rose by 10% in Yarra Ranges, reaching 409 individuals.
It is not illegal to be homeless, not all rough sleepers must be “moved on”.
There is currently inadequate funding for services to support all people who are homeless or at risk in Yarra Ranges.
Local support agencies are leading the management of assistance and service provision for people who are or at risk of homelessness.
Council have a limited role in homelessness response.