Ten-year hous­ing de­lay


Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS - Jil­lian Mc­Kee

MORE than 1000 so­cial hous­ing ap­pli­cants in Mt Druitt are fac­ing more than 10 years on the wait­ing list for a prop­erty.

The lat­est State Govern­ment fig­ures show wait times for one, two- and three-bed­room homes are cur­rently be­tween five to 10 years, how­ever, ap­pli­cants af­ter a four-bed­room home are hav­ing to wait more than 10 years. As at De­cem­ber 2015, there were 1075 so­cial hous­ing ap­pli­cants in the Mt Druitt area.

Mt Druitt state La­bor MP Ed­mond Atalla said the wait times were un­ac­cept­able. “I see some very sad cases come to our of­fice – peo­ple with­out an ad­dress telling us they are sleep­ing in their car or a park or in peo­ple’s back­yards,” Mr Atalla said.

“The Govern­ment needs to fo­cus on fix­ing this is­sue – emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion is tem­po­rary – peo­ple are held for a few weeks and then they are back on the street.”

Mr Atalla said the ex­tended wait times could be put down to lack of prop­er­ties. “A cri­sis has been creat- ed here when the Govern­ment has slowed down on main­te­nance ... there are a lot of empty prop­er­ties re­quir­ing main­te­nance,” he said.

“The other is­sue is the depart­ment is sell­ing hous­ing prop­er­ties and not re- plac­ing th­ese or build­ing new stock.”

A Fam­ily and Com­mu­nity Ser­vices spokesman said the num­ber of so­cial hous­ing ap­pli­cants in the Mt Druitt area had fallen. “From June 2013, to June 2015 there has been a de­crease of 20 per cent for ap­pli­cants on the hous­ing reg­is­ter in Mt Druitt,” he said.

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