Watch HAAG member Alma and Jenny Smith from CHP in an interview on a Channel 9 breakfast show. Friday 9th May 2014.

Watch the interview

In HAppenings, the monthly newsletter of Homelessness Australia, Q and A talks with Jeff Fiedler, from Housing for the Aged Action Group Inc (HAAG),  about all things 'older persons' homelessness.

READ the INTERVIEW as it appeared online in HAppenings, 28th April, 2014

To read a text version of this article click on the image or the heading above.

Victoria’s public housing shortage has worsened, with more than 1000 people being added to the waiting list.
There were 35,027 people on the public housing waiting list in the March quarter, up from 33,916 in the December quarter, according to state figures released on Thursday.
The 3.3 per cent increase comes after the state government pledged to renovate 9500 public housing properties over five years. But the plan has been criticised for not including funding for new properties to meet the growing demand.

To read the full story, click on the heading above.

Read the story at the Age

Published in the Age, Friday 25th April. Steve Lillebuen

The Age Monday April 14 2014


The number of Victorian households waiting for public housing, about 34,000, is at the lowest level since 2007. This reflects a fairly consistent, declining trend since the Coalition came to government in 2010. Such improvements, generally, are to be welcomed. As the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has said, getting people into secure accommodation, a place they can call ''home'', helps improve their health and education, their links to the broader community and their employment prospects.

The government is building about 160 public housing sites at New Norlane outside Geelong, a program announced in 2011. However, in a damning report in 2012, the Auditor-General found the state's public housing situation was ''critical''. There was no long-term strategic plan for managing the properties and about 14 per cent were virtually obsolete.

 Read the article  online at the Age,
Click on the header to read the full article in text version


"Older women's pathways out of homelessness in Australia" was launched on 14 April 2014 by  the Hon. Anna Bligh, CEO YWCA NSW.

There is strong anecdotal evidence that a growing group of people becoming homeless in Australia are women aged over 55.

The Mercy Foundation commissioned a research report from the University of Queensland to investigate this issue and look at possible solutions to the problem. Dr Maree Petersen and Dr Cameron Parsell undertook the research.

Click on the heading above to read the full press release.

The report is available from the Mercy Foundation website or

Download report  here.

Older women fall victim to crisis in homelessnes,

Julia May in the Age, Tuesday 9 April 2014.

In 2012 Joan Lansbury was living in a rundown flat in Pascoe Vale with dodgy hot water, a leaky toilet and appliances that didn't work properly.

She was too scared to complain in case the owner of the flat she'd rented for 15 years put the price up.

But suddenly he did just that, leaving Ms Lansbury, then retired after 25 years as a nursing aide, just $70 a fortnight to live on. She didn't know where to turn.

"I must admit things were so bad at some stages I didn't care whether I was alive or dead," she says.

Ms Lansbury is one of a soaring number of ordinary middle-class women who find themselves on the verge of homelessness in older age.

Read the article on-line at the AGE

or Click on the heading to read the story in full

Middle class, hard working and homeles by Julia May

An alarming number of older women in Victoria are becoming homeless. Many are middle-class and reluctant to seek help.

It was hot water Joan Lansbury missed the most. If she felt some warmth in the kitchen tap she'd strip off and race to the shower, no matter the hour. "It didn't last long and you didn't know when the hot water was going to come on again," says Lansbury, 71.

Normally, she would fill the kitchen sink with water she had heated on the stove and sponge herself down. "Try that in the middle of winter. It's not much fun."

I don’t think I ever could see myself living on the street ... But the costs of living are so high that it really can happen to anyone. 

That was 2012, and Lansbury was living in a rundown flat in Pascoe Vale, in Melbourne's north, with dodgy hot water, a leaky toilet and appliances that didn't work properly.

Click on the story heading to read the story in text version.
Read the article  in full as it appeared in the Age online.


"There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort."

- Jane Austen

Authorized by Fiona York, Housing for the Aged Action Group 247 Flinders Lane Melbourne 3000