Another death among Tahiti's homeless

11:04 am on 8 August 2019

A charity in French Polynesia says so far this year six homeless people in Tahiti have died either in the street or on the beach.

Papeete, capital of French Polynesia

Papeete, capital of French Polynesia Photo: RNZI

A pastor working with Te Vai-ete, the Catholic charity, said the latest victim is a 48-year-old man.

The average age of the victims is 43 according to Father Christophe, who is also the vicar at Papeete Cathedral.

He said promises made by the government a year ago to build shelters have come to nothing with social housing in short supply and many people struggling to make money.

Father Christophe notes that although France has a harsher climate, it has fewer homeless people per capita who die in the street than in Tahiti.

There are 300 people permanently living on the streets he said.

The homeless rate in Tahiti is five times that of mainland France, he said, with figures showing that one in every 5000 people in France are homeless, while in French Polyensia the figure is one in a thousand.