Housing affordability for Australians with disabilities

There is an obvious need to develop long-term affordable and accessible housing solutions for Australians with disabilities.

Access to accessible, safe and affordable housing is a fundamental human right and one stipulated in the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Here in Australia however, adults with disabilities experience significant housing disadvantage including homelessness, poor-quality housing and housing unaffordability; however, we have lacked a comprehensive comparison of the housing circumstances of people with and without disabilities and differences by impairment type.

In a new study led by Zoe Aitken, we analysed data from a nationally representative sample of 11,394 working-aged Australians collected in 2011. We found that people with disabilities experienced disadvantage across all housing indicators, and people with intellectual and psychological disabilities fared worst. These findings suggest that there is a housing crisis for Australians with disabilities, which may intensify with the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme. There is an obvious need to develop long-term housing solutions that promote independence, are accessible and affordable, and that consider location and neighbourhood context.

Aitken Z, Baker E, Badland H, Mason K, Bentley R, Beer A &  Kavanagh AM. Precariously placed: housing affordability, quality and satisfaction of Australians with disabilities, Disability & Society, 22 Dec 2018 (Epub)

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Zoe Aitken