This article by Christopher
Guardian 15 November 2017) is a damning piece about how older
Australian are being treated by the Australian government. The
number finding themselves sleeping in the street is
Mission Australia calls for 60,000 additional social housing
dwellings to be built for older people
Henry Wilson, 73, slept rough at Sydneys Central Station for
several months. Homelessness is growing among older Australians,
Not long ago, Henry Wilson, 73, could count his worldly
possessions on both hands.
He was sleeping rough at Sydneys Central Station. With him, he
had just a sleeping bag, shoes, joggers, socks, pants and a
Wilson didnt drink. He didnt gamble. He was simply forced to
leave a toxic living environment, and was rendered homeless by
Sydneys stratospheric property prices.
Wilson spent several months on the streets. He remembers the
passersby that turned their noses up. He could hear them mutter
under their breath.
It was hard, but I just sort of took it, and moved on, he
Wilson remembers going to sleep in a state of hypervigilance,
always ready for an unpredictable threat or opportunistic theft.
One night, he let his guard down. He was assaulted and robbed of
his meagre possessions.
You were fighting to go to sleep because you didnt know what was
going to happen. It was scary, he said.
As soon as I sensed someone was near, I used to wake up. But
then one night I didnt, and my things got taken.
Henry Wilson at his new accommodation in Sydney. Wilson slept
rough at Sydneys Central Station for several months.
Wilson is one of the many older Australians facing homelessness.
Its a problem that will only get worse. Two distinct social trends
an ageing population and rising
property prices are combining to drive concerns that more
older Australians will find themselves homeless.
Mission Australia this week released
a report on the issue, collating data on ageing and
homelessness to paint a worrying national picture. The number of
older Australians is set to double between 2010 and 2050.
The most recent census figures available on homelessness, from