Greens seek New­start rise

Southern Telegraph - - NEWS -

Greens can­di­date for Brand Jody Free­man has called on the ma­jor par­ties to com­mit to in­creas­ing the rate of New­start as a start­ing point to ad­dress­ing home­less­ness un­fold­ing in Rock­ing­ham.

Ms Free­man said she was sad­dened to read about 17 home­less peo­ple liv­ing on in­dus­trial bush­land in East Rock­ing­ham, as re­ported in the Sound Tele­graph, and it was “ab­so­lutely un­ac­cept­able” peo­ple were forced to live in camps.

“As a lo­cal and some­one who is seek­ing to rep­re­sent the peo­ple of Brand, I find it ab­so­lutely un­ac­cept­able that peo­ple in our com­mu­nity are liv­ing in camps in Rock­ing­ham be­cause they can’t find suit­able hous­ing in their own com­mu­nity,” she said. “The fact is, if you are on an in­come sup­port pay­ment you are very likely to be liv­ing in poverty, close to poverty and in hous­ing stress.

“About 75 per cent of all stu­dents re­ceiv­ing youth al­lowance and rent as­sis­tance face hous­ing stress and for those get­ting New­start and rent as­sis­tance, the fig­ure is about 60 per cent.

Ms Free­man said the Greens had de­vel­oped a fully costed plan to in­vest in 500,000 new pub­lic and com­mu­nity homes through a Fed­eral Hous­ing Tru­s­tand would es­tab­lish a Na­tional Stan­dard for Renters’ Rights.

“Rais­ing New­start is now an elec­tion is­sue and the Greens are the only party who have com­mit­ted to in­creas­ing the pay­ment,” she said.

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