The study involved interviewing a sample of 60 recently housed social housing tenants in three states. While not representative of the total population of social housing tenants in Australia, the qualitative analysis involved identified a number of common patterns across the states. These include the present need for more social housing, apparent barriers in the process of applying for social housing, and similar patterns of mobility (or immobility) within the social housing system itself.
The study suggests that pathways into social housing are shaped by a combination of low income and a range of additional underlying risk factors, crisis triggers, social housing application barriers and enablers, and the assessment outcomes once an application has been received.
Policy responses to these issues should include:
- a greater diversity of programs (e.g. long-term and short-term private rental subsidies, or private rental brokerage)
- enabling greater choice and mobility within the social housing sector
- completing and refining service integration initiatives, and to improve coordination with external support, advocacy and referral organisations.
Image: Banksy House Graffiti, Chris Devers / flickr