Growing number of older homeless people is a ‘ticking time bomb’
The number of older people that are homeless has risen by 130% in the past eight years, council leaders have warned today.
The Local Government Association said the nation is facing an older person homelessness ‘time bomb’ with nearly 10 a day being accepted as homeless by councils.
The LGA said that based on existing trends, this figure is set to double by 2025.
The report reveals that older homeless people often a range of complex health conditions which can create significant extra pressures for councils. There is also little understanding of the link between homelessness and health for older people.
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: ‘Traditionally homelessness is associated with young people and it is a tragic fact that a person suffering homelessness lives to an average age of only 47.
‘But we are facing a ticking time bomb in older homelessness, with an alarming rise in the number of older people becoming homeless. While the actual numbers are relatively low, at the current rate, this will spiral in just a few years.
‘Homelessness is not just a housing issue. Homelessness and ill-health are intrinsically linked, and this is especially evident in elderly people.’
The LGA is calling for the Government to address the undersupply in specialist housing for older people.