Today we called on the government to take concrete steps to improve housing affordability in Sydney. Their response shows just how completely out of touch they are on this issue.
The Greens understand that public housing is a community priority and a government responsibility. Everyone deserves access to a safe and secure home. We have a plan to expand public housing, to provide a place for everyone on the waiting list.
For more than 100 years, government funded public housing has been available to low income earners in NSW. Government owned estates provided working class people, the elderly, new immigrants, young families, and working people in low-income, essential services the opportunity to live in our cities and regional centres, and participate in their local communities.
In recent decades we have seen a shift. Successive governments have under invested in maintaining safe, secure, affordable housing for low-income earners. Many public housing tenants suffer long standing issues around maintenance and safety.
Under both Labor and Liberal governments, public housing waiting and transfer lists in NSW have grown out of control.
There are some 50,000 approved applications for households now on the Housing NSW list – that’s around 80/100,000 people waiting for a home. Some people will wait for up to 10 years.
People who live in public housing face on-going challenges around safety issues, maintenance and redevelopment of their homes. Many public housing tenants live with leaking roofs, broken stoves, mould, bed bugs and dodgy plumbing. Simple measures to improve safety are often ignored. Too much public housing, especially in our inner-city areas, is being sold off to developers for them to profit from. NSW Land and Housing plans to privatise 70% of the proposed redevelopments in the public housing estates in Waterloo and South Eveleigh and in the proposed new housing development at 600 Elizabeth Street, Redfern using their 'Communities Plus' formula which is based on a zero cost and often surplus generation by 'redeveloping' public housing estates and public land for a mix of public and private dwellings.
We want to see investment in public housing so that all the households on the NSW Housing Register are housed and all public housing properties are properly maintained.
We are calling on the NSW Government to:
- Significantly increase the number of public housing dwellings in inner-city Sydney and across NSW
- Stop the sell-off of public housing and publicly owned lands via the Communities Plus model
- Ensure that on-going maintenance of public housing is a priority
- Keep public housing residents safe with appropriate security measures
The Greens are working with public housing communities across NSW.
- The Greens have a plan to expand public housing and stop the selloff of inner city public housing properties
- In the NSW Parliament the Greens established an Inquiry into Social, Public and Affordable Housing that heard from public housing residents from across NSW and delivered 41 recommendations to Government to fix the housing system
- We support residents at Waterloo, South Eveleigh, Redfern and throughout NSW in opposing the selloff of public housing
- The Newtown Electorate Office has assisted hundreds of public housing tenants with issues including maintenance, safety and relocation. We have taken the concerns of residents affected by the Waterloo development and other planned developments direct to the Minister for Housing
- Our office sits on local Neighbourhood Advisory Boards (NABs) alongside tenant representatives and support services.
- The NSW Greens submission to the 2020 follow up Review of the Management of NSW public housing maintenance contracts.
Public Housing issues in the Newtown Electorate:
- 600 Elizabeth Street, Redfern April 2022
- Public Housing Community Rooms April 2021
- Alice Street public housing regular meetings April 2021
- Save South Eveleigh public housing Feb 2021
- Community rejects public housing sell off and redevelopment in Eveleigh Dec 2020
- South Eveleigh Public Housing redevelopment Nov 2020
- Glebe and Eveleigh public housing redevelopments shortchange the public Nov 2020
- Public and affordable housing needs to be key in Waterloo
- Greens back Aboriginal Affordable Housing campaign call Sept 2020
- Waterloo plans need a radical rethink Jan 2019
- Public Housing for Private Profit Nov 2016
Some of Jenny’s work in Parliament:
- Notice of Motion on Housing Instability 2022
- Private Members Statement - Housing Strategy 2021
- Notice of Motion on Aboriginal Affordable Housing 2021
- Notice of Motion on South Eveleigh Housing redevelopment 2021
- Public Interest Debate - Rural and Regional Housing 2021
- Social Housing petition debate 2021
- Question to the Premier about pest control in public housing 2021
- Notice of Motion regarding the need for urgent social housing dwellings 2020
- Questions on Notice regarding public housing 2020-2022
- Question to the Premier on LAHC negligence and need for regular pest control in public housing 2021
- Question to the Premier on public housing waiting list and maintenance backlog 2018
- Question to the Attorney General on the FACS Inner City local housing allocation strategy 2018
- Housing Legislation Amendment Bill 2016
- Question to the Treasurer on Serco profiteering from public housing in NSW
- Social and Affordable Housing NSW Fund Bill 2016
- Private Member’s Statement on the Northcott Public Housing Estate
- Residential Tenancies and Housing Legislation Amendment (Public Housing—Antisocial Behaviour) Bill 2015
"By leave: I draw the attention of this Parliament to the amazing work of YFoundations in supporting young people who are at risk of and experiencing homelessness. YFoundations works collaboratively with non-government organisations, government and community members to provide policy and structural advocacy services for young people.
Earlier this year I was pleased to attend the Youth Homelessness Matters Day and congratulate YFoundations chief executive officer Michael Coffey, senior policy officer Chris Stone and the YFoundations youth ambassadors, Alice Zhang and Sarah Maynard. I commend them for their ongoing commitment to the organisation. I acknowledge the contribution of Australia's first National Children's Commissioner, Megan Mitchell, who launched the event. I thank her for her tireless advocacy for the rights and interests of children, and the laws policies and programs that impact on them."
Premier Gladys Berejiklian has been challenged to produce evidence that the government's policies have significantly reduced house prices, after claiming in Parliament that the average Sydney house is $50,000 lower than it would be thanks to state government policies.Read more
Today in Question Time, following the Premier and the Treasurer talking up the Government’s record on housing approvals, NSW Greens spokesperson on Housing Jenny Leong MP asked the Premier to explain at what point the increase in housing supply would result in stabilising or reducing housing prices in NSW.
Jenny Leong MP said:
“It just doesn’t add up. We are seeing record levels of housing supply in NSW yet house prices continue to spiral upwards.Read more
NSW Greens Housing spokesperson, Jenny Leong MP says that ending ‘no grounds’ evictions in NSW is a simple reform that will provide much needed security for renters in Newcastle, Port Stephens, the Hunter and across the state.
The Greens are kicking off a campaign to end ‘no grounds’ evictions with the launch of the rentersrights.org.au website.
“Many renters live in fear of being thrown out of their home, even when they pay rent on time and look after the property. These laws are unfair and out of date,” Ms Leong said.Read more
NSW Greens spokesperson for Housing Jenny Leong MP says that the NSW Government must consider the needs of the growing number of tenants facing lifelong renting as they address the housing affordability crisis.
“The reason that affordable housing is so essential is that it provides people on moderate incomes with a safe and secure place to live. That security should also be extended to renters and there’s a simple and immediate way to do that – by ending ‘no grounds’ evictions,” says Ms Leong.Read more
The NSW Government has commissioned a review of rents in public, community and affordable housing in NSW.
Access to safe and secure housing is a human right. The supply of public, community and affordable housing to everyone who needs it is a government responsibility.
It’s essential that the experiences and views of people living in public and community housing are considered as part of that review.
Make a submission to the review here and we will pass it on to IPART, the independent tribunal conducting the review on behalf of the Government.
To IPART NSW,
Submission to the Review of Social and Affordable Housing Rent Models
Social housing is a government responsibility and a way of ensuring that safe and secure housing is available to everyone who needs it.
I support the principle of social housing as it allows people with different incomes to live in our city. I oppose the sell-off of public housing and the shifting of public and community housing tenants out of our inner-city.
As a member of the community who has an interest in public, community and affordable housing, I want to share my views.Take the survey
The NSW Premier has announced that former Reserve Bank of Australia governor Glenn Stevens will be assisting the government with their housing affordability strategy.
NSW Greens spokesperson on Housing Jenny Leong MP has welcomed the Premier’s recognition that housing affordability is an urgent issue for the people of NSW, but says that the solution needs to move beyond supply.Read more