Mice infestation, no Medicare and rental support drying up: The refugee cost-of-living crisis
- Some asylum seekers are living in unsanitary homes and struggling to pay medical and power bills.
- Financial support for refugees has been cut as charity groups' funding has dried up.
- A peak body has urged the Albanese government to strengthen the safety net for refugees and asylum seekers.
"We can't afford to put the heater on all the time".
Riya is one of about 15,000 asylum seekers unable to keep pace with rising living costs.
Cost-of-living crisis has impacted funding
"Our ability to stave off homelessness and destitution for those we support now teeters on the edge as the cost-of-living and accommodation crisis continue to worsen," centre CEO Danielle Townsend said.
The program supports about 1,300 people across Australia, compared to a previous 30,000.
"We've got skyrocketing rents and a vast undersupply of affordable housing. It's fair to say many people are living in crisis," he said.
"There are no clear criteria for payments and that is unlike any other social security payment in the country."