This policy paper examines the relationship between homelessness and mental health and the specific challenges that exist for young Australians aged 12 to 25 years who experience, or are at risk of, experiencing homelessness. The paper also examines the evidence behind particular intervention and prevention mechanisms and outline available policy solutions.
This report has been informed through engagement with stakeholders and a review of the available literature to understand youth homelessness and the interaction with mental health. This involved a review of Australian, state and territory government’s policies and plans across the areas of mental health, homelessness, housing, drug and alcohol, and justice. A review of evidence was also conducted to identify the most relevant research published in peer reviewed literature on mental health focused approaches to resolving youth homelessness. Representatives from the homelessness and youth mental health sectors were engaged in consultation in the development of the report.