This is our prob­lem

Mercury (Hobart) - - OPINION - G. Farmer Glenorchy San­dra Nemet Glenorchy Wayne McDon­ald Ta­roona Plea to act fast on home­less­ness cri­sis — Harry Glen Pears Geil­ston Bay H. Steven­son Lauderdale

RATHER than wait­ing for gov­ern­ment to solve ev­ery cri­sis per­haps it’s time to show some ini­tia­tive. This is not a gov­ern­ment prob­lem, it’s our prob­lem. Kirsten Ritchie, founder of Strike it Out Inc, has a Go­FundMe page to raise $60,000 to buy 40 sec­ond-hand sleep­ing pods. That’s only $1500 a per­son to get some­one off the streets and into warm, se­cure emer­gency ac­com­mo­da­tion. Per­haps it’s also time for phi­lan­thropy from some of our larger Tas­ma­nian com­pa­nies. To them, the money needed is a drop in the bucket. Imag­ine the amaz­ing PR op­por­tu­nity for one of the large short-stay ac­com­mo­da­tion providers. They could part­ner with the Univer­sity’s School of Ar­chi­tec­ture to de­sign sim­ple pods that could be made in Tas­ma­nia. There’s even po­ten­tial for these to be as­sem­bled in some of our Men’s Sheds which are full of ma­chin­ery and skilled vol­un­teers. I stayed in a va­cant of­fice

Evict­ing ten­ants

WELL done to Ten­ants Union so­lic­i­tor Ben Bartl against Hous­ing Tas­ma­nia evict­ing ten­ants at the end of their lease. This has been go­ing on for years and many in­no­cent peo­ple have found them­selves home­less and in des­per­ate cir­cum­stances. What is the rea­son of the hous­ing depart­ment for evict­ing good ten­ants from their homes which must have been so heart­break­ing and soul de­stroy­ing, then hav­ing the au­dac­ity to bring new ten­ants in straight­away? The gen­eral pub­lic want an­swers from the hous­ing depart­ment.

Help, or turn our backs

WE have been told we have at least 40 peo­ple sleep­ing rough in the freez­ing cold on the Queens Do­main. Our gov­ern­ment and churches must at least send buses with heat­ing and food re­lief. The other op­tion is to cal­lously turn our backs. We must pro­vide food, med­i­cal sup­plies and warm shelter now. If we ne­glect this re­spon­si­bil­ity we may lose some of our loved ones. Peo­ple must be shut­tled to the City Hall where they can be safe and cared for. Many have sub­stance abuse is­sues, men­tal health is­sues and come from dys­func­tional fam­i­lies. Un­less a holis­tic ap­proach is taken, the whole prob­lem will con­tinue. All po­lit­i­cal par­ties need to work to­gether and stop blam­ing each other!

Am­ple land free

CALLS to ad­dress the hous­ing short­age are not be­ing given the pri­or­ity de­served. Calls for an AFL team seem to have cen­tre stage. Re­in­state the Hous­ing Depart­ment, build homes and im­ple­ment changes to Ur­ban Growth Bound­ary rules, or call a state elec­tion and we can elect politi­cians who can pro­vide so­lu­tions. Poorly built medium to high-rise units with cheap fixtures and fit­tings, small liv­ing ar­eas, lim­ited or no park­ing, re­duced ceil­ing heights and no back­yards are not for fam­i­lies, they are merely mak­ing de­vel­op­ers wealthy at owner or renter ex­pense. There is am­ple land to be­gin a con­certed ef­fort. In­ac­tion can no longer be tol­er­ated. The Hodg­man Gov­ern­ment was elected on a man­date to de­liver prom­ises and so far per­for­mance has been poor in many ar­eas. Per­for­mance lately re­sem­bles Yes, Min­is­ter and that is an in­sult to the peo­ple of Tas­ma­nia.

Abo­rig­i­nal names for new sites

DOES it re­ally mat­ter if places are re­named, since his­tory can’t be changed? To have a re­flec­tion of the past, could it be an idea for new sub­urbs, land, busi­ness, com­mer­cial, ed­u­ca­tional or other be given Abo­rig­i­nal names they would have had or could now have? Would it help to walk to­gether from the past into the fu­ture? GPO Box 334, Ho­bart, Tas 7001

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