Victorian Parliament Upper House Inquiry into the Public Housing Renewal Program
The reporting date for this Inquiry is March 20, 2018. The State Government is required to respond within 6 months of the Report being tabled in Parliament.
The Committee is currently in the process of reviewing received submissions. These are published on-line as they are processed by the Committee. Some 170 submissions have been processed to date. Submissions are available to be viewed at https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/lsic/article/3844
The VPTA is concerned that this Inquiry further delays upgrades to public housing estates sorely in need of renewal. Many are opposed to the sale of Government owned land on these estates to fund new public housing, but to do nothing, is not an option in our view. Increasing housing density and optimising existing assets for both public and private dwellings, is part of the solution to addressing the current crisis in affordable housing availability.
The VPTA understands that he Department is proceeding with the planned renewals. Specialist housing relocation staff will continue to liaise with tenants on estates affected by the re-developments to assist them with temporary relocations or permanent transfers. An abridged transfer application will be given to all tenants to assist in establishing their housing needs and re-location preferences More information can be found on the Department’s website at http://www.housing.vic.gov.au/public-housing-renewal-program or contact us at the VPTA on 1800 015 510 (free call).
Markham Estate stalled
This former public housing estate in Ashburton has now been vacant land for over two years. Debate over land sale and housing construction continues; little consolation to the homeless and those on the Priority Wait List for housing.
The Victorian Opposition and the Greens united in Parliament to stop the construction of the 62 public housing dwellings that were planned to be built at this site along with some 225 private dwellings.
The VPTA wants to see more public housing built on all available sites. A return to doing little or nothing, resulting in a decline in the number of public housing dwellings as has been happening in Victoria for decades, cannot be countenanced.
VPTA Social Media
Our Social Media presence has been growing, with an ever-increasing number of followers on Twitter and Facebook. Unfortunately, some of the comments that are made on our Facebook page are incorrect and, seemingly, seek to damage the VPTA. Allegations that we support stock transfers (we don’t!) or are funded by Community Housing (we’re not!) or don’t care about tenants (we do, and spend many hundreds of hours assisting tenants with their housing related inquiries) are, at best, misleading, if not downright malicious.
The VPTA Board has therefore approved the following policy to be posted to our Facebook page:
“Our Facebook page has been created to promote the views of the VPTA on affordable housing issues and to provide factual information on these issues to public housing tenants and other interested parties. Visitors to this page are encouraged to ‘like’ our page and like &/or share our posts. Comments may be posted; however, the VPTA reserves the right to moderate all such comments or ban/block any poster from using our Facebook page when it is clear that the poster is contributing inappropriate content. The VPTA has a right to delete any material or posts which it believes, at our absolute discretion, to be: – defamatory or offensive; false, misleading or deceptive; an infringement of the rights of others, including an infringement of copyright, moral rights or trade mark rights: confidential information; or otherwise contrary to the intentions, purposes or values of our organisation. The VPTA is committed to maintaining a safe and friendly environment for its staff, volunteers and subscribers/members. Comments which aggressively attack other users or this organisation will not be tolerated.”
Office closure over holidays
Please note that the VPTA office will close early at 12 mid-day on Friday 22nd. December. We will remain open throughout the break except for the main public holidays albeit with a reduced staff component.
The VPTA wishes you all a safe and relaxing summer; we hope you find time to sit back, spend some cheerful time with friends, neighbours &/or family and experience ‘Peace and Good Will’.