This policy aims to reduce the risks to life and health of people sleeping rough during extreme weather conditions in Victoria.

People who are sleeping rough in extreme weather conditions are at increased risk due to exposure. These risks include developing or worsening of chronic health issues and poorer longer term health outcomes, or at risk of death due to sleeping in dangerous areas such as riverbanks prone to flash flooding.

The July 2016 winter cold snap across Victoria highlighted the need to develop a long term policy for responding to people sleeping rough during extreme weather conditions and the means to provide a quick response on the ground. A working group with representatives from non-government service providers, peak bodies and the Department of Health and Human Services (the department) assisted with the development of the policy through a discussion paper.