"There has been increasing awareness of the statistics of women aged 55 and over experiencing homelessness in Victoria and Australia more broadly. The 2014 report ‘Older Women’s Pathways Out of Homelessness in Australia’ found that women in this age group may have limited superannuation, minimal work experience and potentially inadequate financial literacy from time unemployed due to caring responsibilities and unpaid labour. Therefore many older single women may be living off welfare payments with minimal savings while renting in the unaffordable and unsustainable private rental market. The 2014 report states that older women are more likely to be the ‘invisible homeless’, both physically and statistically; more likely to couch surf, live in their car or at home under threat of violence than be sleeping rough. This physical and statistical invisibility means that appropriate and specific services, support, referrals and housing are minimal. It also means on a policy level there is limited government understanding of what is needed to not only support older women out of homelessness, but prevent homelessness or housing instability occurring in the first place. "
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