Seeking ‘Common Ground’ on homeless problem

The City of Sydney is set to develop its own Common Ground model, a long-term and supported housing initiative.

The decision followed unanimous endorsement of Cr Marcelle Hoff’s motion to investigate the feasibility of the model. It aims to complement the council’s Homelessness Strategy, which has set a target to end chronic homelessness in the inner Sydney region by 2017.

A key focus of the Council’s strategy is the ‘Housing First’ model, which provides coordinated support for people with complex needs who have been homeless for a long time, and places them in housing.

The Common Ground approach in a similar way involves providing permanent housing with onsite support.

The council said the model is working successfully in the United States and Melbourne, where its implementation resulted in a significant saving in the government money, compared with the health, policing, emergency services, welfare and other expenses of caring for the chronically homeless, who bounce from service to service with little change in their situation or prospects.

With successful projects requiring coordination of all levels of government as well as private philanthropy, the council added  the Federal and State governments, and other industry sectors have indicated their interest in developing a Common Ground project for Sydney.

During the feasibility study, the council will consult with other stakeholders and explore implementation options, potentially including the use of the council-owned property.

Comment below to have your say on this story.

If you have a news story or tip-off, get in touch at  

Sign up to the Government News newsletter

Leave a comment:

Your email address will not be published. All fields are required