‘Waste­ful’ use of Dream­house

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Quick News -

A SU­BI­ACO coun­cil­lor has crit­i­cised the use of a City-owned prop­erty that houses two in­tel­lec­tu­ally dis­abled young adults, doc­u­mented in ABC se­ries The Dream­house, as waste­ful and “high main­te­nance”.

The six-part se­ries, nar­rated by Adam Hills, fol­lowed Justin, Kirk and Sarah for 10 weeks when they moved out of home for the first time last year.

At a com­mit­tee meet­ing this month, Cr Lyn­ley Hewett said the City of Su­bi­aco should de­fer ne­go­ti­at­ing a new lease with af­ford­able hous­ing provider Foun­da­tion Hous­ing as its cur­rent two-per­son oc­cu­pancy was an “un­der use” of the sixbed­room $1.7 mil­lion dol­lar prop­erty.

“I don’t know if Foun­da­tion Hous­ing are the right peo­ple to be leas­ing this to,” she said.

“There are other peo­ple who can and will deal with in­tel­lec­tu­ally hand­i­capped adults.

“Whilst I can un­der­stand the cur­rent feel­good fad for moth­er­ing the peo­ple in the TV show and show­er­ing them with ratepayer funds, that may not be in the best and most ef­fec­tive in­ter­est of our obli­ga­tion ( to in­tel­lec­tu­ally dis­abled peo­ple).”

At the coun­cil meet­ing last week, Cr Hewett said she be­lieved Foun­da­tion Hous­ing was in breach of its lease and called for the new lease to stip­u­late it only be used as in­terim hous­ing.

Com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment di­rec­tor Jo Sadler said the City had a cur­rent lease and sub-lease agree­ment with Foun­da­tion Hous­ing un­til May 2015.

“This (mo­tion) is so that Foun­da­tion Hous­ing and the young peo­ple there can have some se­cu­rity of ten­ure,” Ms Sadler said.

Cr Stephanie Stroud said coun­cil­lors should not dis­miss the wider im­pact of the TV se­ries.

“While we may just be talk­ing about two ten­ants, the im­pact of The Dream­house is much greater than that,” Cr Stroud said.

Coun­cil­lors ap­proved the staff rec­om­men­da­tion 10- 1 to con­tinue ne­go­ti­a­tions with Foun­da­tion Hous­ing and for­malise a new lease agree­ment.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d423857

Mayor Heather Hen­der­son with Justin and Kirk, the in­tel­lec­tu­ally dis­abled adults whose jour­ney into in­de­pen­dence was the sub­ject of the doc­u­men­tary The Dream­house.

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