At Risk: 405,000 older women risk homelessness without urgent policy reform

Older women have a right to appropriate and affordable housing as a foundation for their wellbeing, however they are the fastest growing cohort of people experiencing homelessness in Australia. Older women’s pathway to homelessness is a gendered issue and a consequence of long-term systemic issues. The problem is exacerbated by Australia’s lack of appropriate and affordable housing, particularly for those on low incomes, which means that increasing numbers of older women are left with nowhere to go. This is an unfolding crisis that is only worsened by the economic, social and health impacts of COVID-19, which has highlighted the critical link between safe, secure and affordable housing and good health and wellbeing, particularly in older age.