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Definitions: Poverty versus Inequality
What is poverty?
Poverty is a relative concept used to describe the people in a society that cannot participate in the activities that most people take for granted. The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) uses the following definitions:
"Deprivation: Looking at the essential items people are missing out on.
Poverty lines: A level of income, below which people are regarded as living in poverty.
Relative poverty: This is when poverty is measured against something that can change. It means that poverty is measured against a standard that is unacceptably low in a given point in time.
Absolute poverty: This is when a household or person does not have enough income for even a basic acceptable standard of living, or to meet basic living needs. The threshold for absolute poverty varies between developed and developing countries.
Extreme poverty: When people are living on an income below the international poverty line set by the World Bank of $1.90 a day.
Poverty gap: The average difference between the poverty line and the disposable income of households living below that poverty line." (ACOSS, n.d.)
What is inequality?
Inequality means the unequal distribution within society of income, wealth and goods. The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) measures inequality in two ways: income inequality and wealth inequality. (ACOSS, n.d.)
Reference / citation: Jericho (2019, April 15) or (Jericho, 2019, April 15)
Reference list / Bibliography: Jericho, G., (2019, April 15). Australian poverty in graphs: it's a desperate state of affairs in The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/15/australian-poverty-in-graphs-its-a-desperate-state-of-affairs
Reference / citation: Henriques-Gomes (2019, June 2) or (Henriques-Gomes, 2019, June 2)
Reference list / Bibliography: Henriques-Gomes, L., (2019, June 2). Australia's homeless crisis: chance encounter highlights bugs in the system in the Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/jun/02/australias-homeless-crisis-chance-encounter-highlights-bugs-in-the-system
Reference / citation: Henriques-Gomes (2020, April 4) or (Henriques-Gomes, 2020, April 4)
Reference list / Bibliography: Henriques-Gomes, L., (2020, April 4). 'How come we don't have anywhere to isolate?' Coronavirus and Australia's homelessness crisis in the Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/apr/04/how-come-we-dont-have-anywhere-to-isolate-coronavirus-and-australias-homelessness-crisis
Reference / citation: Henriques-Gomes (2019, May 30) or (Henriques-Gomes, 2019, May 30)
Reference list / Bibliography: Henriques-Gomes, L., (2019, May 30). 'Homelessness becoming concentrated in Sydney and Melbourne, study finds in the Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/may/30/homelessness-becoming-concentrated-in-sydney-and-melbourne-study-finds
Homelessness in Australia | Overview: eBooks
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On any given night, 105,000 Australians are homeless and without safe, secure or affordable housing. Every day, more than half the people who request immediate accommodation from homelessness services are turned away. Homelessness has profound effects on various groups in society including families, young people, women escaping domestic violence, indigenous Australians, and people with substance abuse and mental health problems. Homelessness results in social and economic costs to individuals, families, communities and the nation. How is homelessness currently defined and how are homeless people counted? Who are the homeless and how can they be housed? This book presents a current overview of the plight of Australia's homeless, exploring their unmet needs and strategies to address the entrenched problem of homelessness.
'Poverty persists in Australia despite the opportunities available in such an affluent country. How is poverty in Australia defined? What is absolute poverty as opposed to relative poverty, and who are the affected groups in our community? What are the causes of poverty? At a time when the national economy has avoided the major impacts of a global recession, why do so many Australians still experience financial hardship, housing stress and income inequality?
Globally, 400 million children are living in extreme poverty; nearly 600,000 Australian children live in relative poverty. What are the absolute and relative measures of poverty and deprivation for children in developing and developed countries? How does poverty impact children's health, development and wellbeing? How can impoverished children be given a better chance in life? The prevalence and problems of child poverty are explored from a global and Australian perspective. Also includes: worksheets and activities, fast facts, glossary, web links, index. Titles in the Issues in Society series are individual resource books which provide an overview on a specific subject comprised of facts and opinions. The information in this resource book is not from any single author, publication or organisation. The unique value of the Issues in Society series lies in its diversity of content and perspectives. The content comes from a wide variety of sources and includes: newspaper reports and opinion pieces, website fact sheets, magazine and journal articles, statistics and surveys, government reports, and literature from special interest groups.
Australia is one of the wealthiest countries in the world and has long prided itself on being an egalitarian society. However, there is a growing divide between those with the most and those with the least. Income inequality has grown as the minimum wage and unemployment benefits have failed to match the rise in average earnings, resulting in a divergence between low-income earners and average Australian wage earners.
This book explores the complexities of homelessness in Australia--and the future policies likely to improve the situation. What is homelessness? Who counts as homeless? Whose responsibility is homelessness? In Homelessness in Australia, experts in the sector offer timely insights into the history, causes, and extent of homelessness in the country, and the future policy directions most likely to have a positive impact. Covering issues such as gender, Indigenous homelessness, family violence, young people, and the effects of trauma, the book aims to improve both the understanding of the complexities involved and the outcomes for those experiencing homelessness.
Reference / citation: Council to Homeless Persons (n.d.) or (Council to Homeless Persons, n.d.)
Reference list / Bibliography: Council to Homeless Persons, (n.d.). Facts about homelessness [in Australia]. https://chp.org.au/homelessness/
"Australia is experiencing serious housing affordability issues. Over a million lower income households are paying housing costs which exceed the commonly-used affordability benchmark of 30% of household income." (ACOSS, n.d.)
The Melbourne City Mission provides urgent housing assistance, including their 'Front yard' youth services assists young people aged 12 to 24 who are at risk of or currently experiencing homelessness. The Melbourne City Mission also "provides a wide range of preventative, responsive and ongoing services to disrupt the cycle of homelessness and assist people to get their lives back on track." (Melbourne City Mission, n.d.)
"Does the Census measure homelessness?
‘Homelessness' is not a characteristic that is directly measured in the Census through questions on the Census form. Estimates of the homeless population may be derived from the Census using analytical techniques, based on both the characteristics observed in the Census and assumptions about the way people may respond to Census questions." (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2016)
"The annual rental affordability index (RAI) report is an easy to understand indicator of rental affordability relative to household incomes. It is a crucial tool for policy-makers to track rental affordability trends and inform evidence-based policy responses. The RAI is a valuable tool for quantifying the rental affordability challenge in a way that brings out nuances between places and highlights the experiences of disadvantaged households." (GS Economics & Planning, n.d.)
The Australian rental affordability index (RAI) project partners includes: National Shelter, Community Sector Banking, SGS economics and planning, and the Brotherhood St Laurence.