Australian Greens Senator and Spokesperson for Housing, Dr Mehreen Faruqi, has responded to today’s Australian Institute of Health and Research report which shows Australia has lost 20,000 public housing units in the last decade. She welcomed the increase in community housing, but said public housing must be a bigger part of the housing mix.
Senator Faruqi said:
“It is time for the Federal Government to step in and show leadership on the housing crisis. We know that social housing in general has not kept pace with demand.
“It is a national shame that 140,000 people are still on public housing waiting lists.
“The reality is that Government-owned public housing is an essential part of the housing mix, but State Governments have increasingly been shirking their responsibility to build it. Public housing is a crucial part of our social safety net that has been eroded over time. We need to reverse this.
“I am particularly disturbed to see waiting times for people classified as being in the greatest need increasing, rather than decreasing. The most vulnerable in our society shouldn’t be forced to wait over a year for the basic right of a roof over their heads.
“The Greens have a plan to build 500,000 new public and community homes through a Federal Housing Trust. Everyone has the right to a safe, secure and permanent home,” she concluded.