On Monday night, almost 180 volunteers and peer advisers walked Sydney's streets, parks and paths for the bi-annual Street Count.
I'd like to thank everyone who volunteered their time very late at night to help with this important work.
Since 2008 the City has organised Street Count to measure the number of people sleeping rough or in crisis accommodation in our city.
The Street Count conducted in August 2008 found 354 people sleeping rough and preliminary results from this week's Count have shown a decrease in that number - with 226 counted on the night.
This is encouraging news. While there is still work to be done, I believe the City's progressive approach to reducing homelessness is having an effect. We do more than any other local government in Australia to reduce homelessness and I am committed to continuing our work with Housing NSW, Bridge Housing, Neami and Common Ground to end chronic homelessness in our city.
I am also committed to a target for the City of Sydney to ensure 15 per cent of all homes in the Local Government Area are affordable or social housing by 2030. To make this happen we are building, or have already built, 900 new affordable housing units including:
- Seven at the Property Industry Foundation House in Redfern;
- 50 as part of the Harold Park redevelopment;
- 100 at Green Square on the former South Sydney Hospital;
- 104 as part of the Common Ground development at Camperdown; and
- Around 550 under the City's affordable housing levy scheme which applies to developments in Ultimo- Pyrmont and Green Square;
The City has also identified 22 potential affordable housing sites in the inner city in a Federal Government funded study on behalf of all councils in the Inner City Mayors Forum.
To find out more about what the City is doing about homelessness, visit: www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Community/HomelessnessServices/Default.asp