Extreme cold kills our homeless – Let’s call it a win!

johnboy 9 July 2009 33

John Hargreaves is letting the world know that the ACT’s 2006 homelessness census is showing some good numbers for the ACT.

    The 2006 Census showed that the ACT has the equal lowest rate of homelessness in Australia at 42 per 10,000 people and a smaller proportion of homeless people sleeping rough (6% in the ACT compared to 16 %nationally).

Congratulations Canberra, our cold winters drive the homeless to parts warmer. Well done.

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33 Responses to Extreme cold kills our homeless – Let’s call it a win!
FC FC 9:10 am 09 Jul 09

Good point johnboy. Its a little easy to sleep on a bench which the minumum is 10 degrees not minus 10!

grundy grundy 9:23 am 09 Jul 09

I read an article recently of a Russian town.
One of the locals pointed out their 0% homeless rate, because of their freezing temperatures!


Pandy Pandy 9:30 am 09 Jul 09

Gene pool!

The Brad The Brad 9:31 am 09 Jul 09

From a humanitarian point of view, it’s a loss. Let’s not try to fix the problem while it existed here. Let’s just be happy the problem has moved away.

I hope JB’s “well done” was sarcastic, becuase I think it’s quite sad. Homeless have it tough enough already, regardless of whether it’s self-inflicted ruin.

ant ant 10:00 am 09 Jul 09

There’s an article in today’s SMH about a homeless man in Sydney, this time last year he was a security manager at AMP… marriage broke up, he evidently lost it, and now he’s sleeping on trains. Pretty rough story.

Ivan76 Ivan76 10:07 am 09 Jul 09

Thats fine for now but what happens when global warming kicks in?

Joshua Joshua 10:11 am 09 Jul 09

ant #5, I read that article too. Appears to me that the guy in the article made 2 serious mistakes; he got married but worse he had kids with her. Nothing is more guaranteed to put your economic future in jeopardy than being the father of kids.

sepi sepi 10:14 am 09 Jul 09
FC FC 10:18 am 09 Jul 09

That’s interesting Sepi. my dad used to cry poor after my parents split up and used to live off a staple diet. I felt bad for him until my mum told me how much he actually earnt and I learnt that he was ‘poor’ because he was putting all his money into his newly aquired properties worth over 1 million!

G-Fresh G-Fresh 10:42 am 09 Jul 09

sepi said :

Divorced men cry poor, but better off than women.

Generalisation sepi. Wrap it up.

FC said :

he was ‘poor’ because he was putting all his money into his newly aquired properties worth over 1 million!

Probably to your benefit anyway there FC? lol

Oh you two. Build a bridge.

FC FC 10:50 am 09 Jul 09

Haha. I wish. My dad’s doesn’t believe in giving handouts or that kind of thing.
Lucky for me I don’t need my parents assistance in that way.

“Oh, you two. Build a bridge”
Is that directed at me? If so, I don’t really see the need to build a bridge, as I have no issue to get over. I was merely commenting on my experience of my parents financial situation post divorce, following sepi’s post. Maybe it is you that needs to build a bridge?

mp2615 mp2615 11:01 am 09 Jul 09

Back to the point. Given that the census is taken in August, then yes you would expect not many people to be sleeping out in the Canberra winter. Equal rate with who, Tasmania ?
Also, it’s household based so gawd knows how they define and count up homeless people.

NoAddedMSG NoAddedMSG 11:02 am 09 Jul 09

G-Fresh, Sepi was quoting directly from the article in the SMH, which is based on a recent study done in Australia. Perhaps you should read the article before commencing fire…..

FC FC 11:03 am 09 Jul 09

I never thought of that mp2615.
I guess if you are sleeping on the streets, you haven’t got a fixed address, and would be filling out a census form!

chewy14 chewy14 11:03 am 09 Jul 09

Nice Link Sepi,
shows that divorced women stay at home and leach off their former husbands doesn’t it?

What that has to do with homeless people i don’t know.

Postalgeek Postalgeek 11:04 am 09 Jul 09

sepi said :


Divorced men cry poor, but better off than women.


The same article also said “Yet many divorced women say they are no worse off than before the break-up, or are even a bit better off, possibly because they have more control over finances, the study shows”

The article almost casually noted “It found about 88 per cent of the mothers had children living with them for most of the time.”

I bet more than a few fathers would prefer to be with their children.

peterh peterh 11:11 am 09 Jul 09

FC said :

I never thought of that mp2615.
I guess if you are sleeping on the streets, you haven’t got a fixed address, and would be filling out a census form!

this point needs to be expanded. how can the act govt claim that homelessness is down, if these people have no fixed address? do they glean this info from the charities who work tirelessly to house these people, provide them with shelter where they can or at least a hot meal?

Homeless people will sleep anywhere where it isn’t putting them at risk of freezing. a stairwell will provide some comfort from the cold, as will other “choice” sites. I have seen people climb into charity bins for the night. The census won’t pick up on these people. There will be a massive gap in the numbers, based on the inventiveness of the homeless to avoid detection – if you are caught sleeping in a dangerous spot, the police move you on. If the shelters are full, there is nowhere else to go…

Skidbladnir Skidbladnir 11:20 am 09 Jul 09

@12 & 13, re: How the homeless tally on the Census:
Information is here (with mouseover)

ant ant 12:48 pm 09 Jul 09

when I worked in a community sector, I recall that the various charity-run shelters had an influx when the really cold weather set in, they’d fill up, and then hand out blankets adn sleeping bags to those who either coudln’t be accommodated, or who didn’t want to be.

There was a chap who used to do the rounds of West Civic and also the Cooyong/Braddon area, picking up cigaratte butts. He had a very bright blanket he’d wear, but one day we saw him with a bright new sleeping bag which he variously wore as a cloak, or stuffed into its bag. It got pretty grubby over the months, but then one day it was all bright and clean again.

Vonbare Vonbare 1:27 pm 09 Jul 09

I don’t think it is sub-zero in Canberra all of a sudden – pretty sure it’s been like this for years….why the sudden drop in homeless numbers then?

I don’t have to runaway and live in the street. I can runaway and I can go to the ocean, I can go to the country, I can go to the mountains. I could go to Israel, Africa, Afghanistan.

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