Jaensch coy on evic­tion

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS - EMILY BAKER

HOUS­ING Min­is­ter Roger Jaensch has not ruled out us­ing pub­lic money to ap­peal a Supreme Court de­ci­sion that al­lowed an in­tel­lec­tu­ally dis­abled man to stay in his Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia unit.

The full bench of the Supreme Court last week ruled to al­low Gre­gory Par­sons to stay in his Glenorchy unit de­spite be­ing evicted by Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia be­cause it was the end of his lease.

The rul­ing means the pub­lic hous­ing provider must give ten­ants a rea­son for their evic­tion — there­fore al­low­ing them a process of ap­peal out­side the court­room.

Ap­pear­ing in bud­get es­ti­mates hear­ings last week, Mr Jaensch left the door open to an ap­peal of the Supreme Court de­ci­sion in the High Court.

Greens Leader Cassy O’Connor yes­ter­day asked Mr Jaensch to rule out us­ing pub­lic fund­ing to ap­peal the Par­sons de­ci­sion.

The for­mer hous­ing min­is­ter said she had al­ways used the pow­ers of evic­tion “very care­fully” to en­sure the ten­ant had enough money to rent pri­vately or buy their own home.

“We’re in the mid­dle of a hous­ing and home­less­ness cri­sis and the very least that the Premier and the Hous­ing Min­is­ter could’ve done to­day was rule out appealing to the High Court to make it eas­ier for Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia to evict ten­ants,” Ms O’Connor said out­side Par­lia­ment.

“Of course Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia needs to have the power to move ten­ants on in cer­tain cir­cum­stances, but it would ap­pear that that power is be­ing abused by Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia un­der this gov­ern­ment.”

Mr Jaensch and Premier Will Hodg­man said evic­tion was only a last re­sort, which an­gered La­bor and Greens MPs who pointed out Mr Par­sons had done noth­ing wrong.

“Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia will take some time now to con­sider the im­pli­ca­tions of the court de­ci­sion,” Mr Jaensch said.

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