Andrews Government foils public housing rent grab plan

THOUSANDS of public housing tenants are almost $4 million behind on their rent, but the Andrews Government is blocking a plan to prevent people running up big debts.

The Herald Sun can reveal one in 10 tenants is in arrears, for an average $438, and more than 1300 have been evicted for failing to pay their rent over the past five years.

But Victoria is the only state refusing to support a federal scheme to automatically deduct rent from public housing tenants’ welfare payments.

Federal Human Services Minister Alan Tudge slammed the blocking of what he called a practical, sensible initiative.

“They would rather see hundreds go homeless than require people to pay their rent from their welfare cheque. This is blind ideology at work,” Mr Tudge said.

“If you are in a public house and receiving welfare, then it is not unreasonable to be required to pay the rent,” he said.

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