SENATOR KATY GALLAGHER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS
SENATOR FOR THE AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
- MORE ACTION LESS TALK REQUIRED FROM TURNBULL ON HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS IN AUSTRALIA -
After almost 2.5 years in government and three housing ministers it's good to see the Prime Minister finally talking about the issue of homelessness in Australia, but the real test will be whether he can match his words with action to address homelessness.
The ‘Ask Izzy app’ developed by the Salvos and launched by the Prime Minister today is a fantastic initiative and will be a really useful resource to link people experiencing homelessness with services designed to support them.
But the Turnbull government cannot hide from the fact that since coming to government in 2013 they have slashed millions of dollars from homelessness funding and silenced the voices of homelessness advocacy organisations at the same time.
In the last two budgets $88m in capital funding was cut from the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness. This money was specifically allocated to help to build more crisis accommodation across Australia.
The government also cut funding for organisations like Homelessness Australia, National Shelter and the Community Housing Federation of Australia.
And while they were cutting they also abolished Round Five of the National Rental Affordability Scheme, introduced under a Labor Government, which boosted the supply of affordable housing in Australia by 26,000 and without coming up with any replacement program.
For the past two years the Turnbull government has failed to show any leadership in addressing the issue of housing affordability or how to support the ever increasing numbers of Australians who are experiencing housing stress.
Malcolm Turnbull never misses a positive photo opportunity and a chance to talk the talk but it’s time for him to match the talk with action and properly resource the homelessness sector so they are able to deliver the services and support where and when they are needed the most.
FRIDAY, 29 JANUARY 2016.