Vinnies welcomes Rudd action on homelessness

St Vincent de Paul Society National CEO Dr John Falzon has welcomed Kevin Rudd's decision to address homelessness as one of his government's top priorities.

Dr Falzon says current homelessness services are unable to meet the needs of Australians as the issue of prevention has not been a “priority” the last 11 years.

"The fact that homelessness services have to turn away half the people seeking assistance - many of them families with very young children - is simply terrible,” Dr Falzon said.

"We are extremely encouraged by Kevin Rudd's genuine interest and commitment to the plight of homeless people in Australia.

Dr Falzon said he invites all MPs to visit Vinnies shelters, in an effort to come up with a “holistic” approach to homelessness.

"We have a great opportunity now to get together and find sustainable solutions that will really make Australia the lucky country,” he said.

In the The 7.30 Report on ABC TV on Tuesday evening, Mr Rudd said he expects all his colleagues to have visited homeless shelters in their local communities and report back on supply and demand issues.

“When I visited homeless shelters during the campaign the turn away rate for people who presented homeless shelters is horrific. Turn away rates of something like 80 or 90 per cent. Now this is just wrong in a country as wealthy as ours,” Mr Rudd said.

Engagement on Homelessness (St Vincent de Paul Society 28/11/07)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
St Vincent de Paul Society
PM-elect in the spotlight (ABC TV 7:30 Report 27/11/07)

Vinnies welcomes Labor commitment to homeless (CathNews, 07/11/07)
Welfare agency lists priorities for 2007 budget (CathNews, 11/12/06)
Vinnies says "no" to Govt money (CathNews, 6/4/06)
Vinnies rejects welfare reforms (CathNews 22/11/05)
Vinnies' Budget plea to Costello to think of poor (CathNews, 11/5/04)
Vinnies puts homelessness, mental health on the agenda (CathNews, 18/10/07)

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