Thursday, April 25, 2024

Tag: Social and Affordable Housing

‘Whole Housing System In Crisis’: Report Finds Australia’s Emergency Accommodation Is Often Unsafe

Study finds lack of available social housing and unaffordable private rentals mean people entering crisis accommodation have no pathways out

Emergency accommodation is often unsafe, inappropriate, of poor quality and compounds the trauma of people experiencing housing crisis, a new report has found.

The lack of available social and affordable housing coupled with inaccessible and unaffordable private rentals meant that most people who entered crisis accommodation had no meaningful pathways out.

Demand for emergency housing was also vastly outstripping supply, which meant services were resorting to acquiring unsuitable and often unsafe short-term accommodation, such as in rooming houses, hostels, motels and caravan parks.

Read the original article at The Guardian

Michael Pascoe: “I’ve Found the Missing Housing – Half a Century’s Worth”

You know all the handwringing about the housing crisis, the claims that “it’s complicated” and that “there’s no silver bullet” and the broad resignation of not having a solution?

Well, I’ve found the missing housing and know what the real solution is – if any government cares.

We’ve arrived at the present housing disaster rather like the Hemingway character explaining how he went bankrupt: “Two ways. Gradually and then suddenly.”

The “gradual” part of the crisis started half a century ago when governments began to withdraw from providing public housing.

That gradual withdrawal turned into a speedy exit since the turn of the century, finally disastrously exploding under the cover of COVID as the nation found itself with a critical shortage of accommodation and an unsustainable model of housing prices forever dramatically rising.

Read the original article at TND

Homelessness Is An Entirely Solvable Problem, Just Ask Finland

Homelessness is a very simple problem that is often over-analyzed. The fact is that there is a group of people who have found themselves (for whatever reason) unable to secure a roof over their heads. Usually, they simply don’t have enough money, because rent is very high and wages are very low, meaning that even if you work full-time it’s extremely hard to afford a small apartment in many cities.

But it’s perfectly possible to simply provide a guaranteed right to housing. This is the approach Finland has taken.

They’re eradicating homelessness through the novel solution of providing housing for people. They took action, and as a result they went from having a substantial homeless population to the point where, by 2020, “practically no-one was sleeping rough on a given night in Finland.”

Read the full article in Current Affairs

More social and affordable housing is the only solution to Australia’s rental crisis

A boost in social housing benefits everyone – people in housing stress get the homes they need and building new homes creates jobs and opportunities

For the first time, Australia is entering the new year with a prime minister who grew up in social housing.

Yet as Australians face a rise in living costs, soaring rents, and crashing vacancy rates, we are also bidding farewell to a key housing affordability measure.

The National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) was designed to help working people who had been priced out of renting, allowing them to create a stable home for themselves and their family.

The scheme wasn’t perfect – it was based on incentives and payments to landlords – but its end will mean thousands of affordable homes will disappear with no plan for the people who were living in them. Renters leaving the scheme will enter a rental market with record low vacancy rates. Data released this week shows a 10% surge in rent prices across capital cities. Many won’t be eligible for social housing, and those who are will find that waiting lists are years long.

Should Australia create ‘settlement cities’ for refugees? Here’s why some say yes

‘Settlement cities’ in Sydney and Melbourne are welcoming places for newly arrived refugees, according to a report, with many settling into their new communities quickly.

A report by the Edmund Rice Centre and migrant settlement agency AMES Australia found ‘settlement cities’ – referring to Local Government Areas (LGAs) which settle a large share of refugees during their first years in Australia – made them feel at home quickly.

The report describes the settlement city ‘model’ not as a formal one, but instead the qualities these LGAs have come to share that facilitate refugee resettlement.

While the model for refugee arrivals was unintended by policy makers, it was having a positive effect.

“Refugees who have this community support find it helps them settle quickly and relatively easily in their new home,” the report said.

AMES Australia chief executive Cath Scarth said the success of settlement cities reinforced the need for an expansion of them to other areas.

“Securing employment and housing, like any other Australians, are priorities for newly arrived refugees. And we can see from the research that having welcoming cities and communities can help deliver these aspirations,” she said.

Read the original article at

The Government Can Build Quality Housing for Everyone

Today, only socialists seem to advocate for high-quality, affordable public housing. In the mid-twentieth century, however, a state government led by South Australia’s Liberal and Country League (LCL) developed one of the world’s most remarkable public housing agencies, the South Australian Housing Trust (SAHT).

The government of South Australia (SA) established the SAHT in 1936. Over the course of its life, it built 122,000 high-quality homes for hundreds of thousands of workers. The SAHT was a product of a different era in the history of capitalism. SA’s need to industrialize, combined with high rates of economic growth, and a strong and organized working class, created the conditions for a pact between industrial capital and the state.

Featured Image from Wikimedia Commons

Island homes: Tasmania election campaign offers few solutions to state’s housing crisis

Housing stress is at an all-time high in Tasmania, shutting out first-home buyers, squeezing the rental market and increasing homelessness

Before Sue Hickey entered state politics as a Liberal MP in 2018, she was Hobart’s lord mayor. Pledging to clean up public toilets and local politics, she also took a keen interest in the plight of people experiencing homelessness.

“You’d see these faces come out of nowhere,” Hickey says, recalling night tours of the city with food van staff and volunteers.

“You’d arrive, you wouldn’t see them, and then all these people just desperate for a sandwich and a Milo with five sugars would appear.”

Those outings were an eye-opener for Hickey, but for most Tasmanians homelessness and housing insecurity were out of sight, out of mind.

4 key leadership skills for a post-COVID-19 workplace

Many organisations have realised the benefits of allowing employees to work remotely, and as a result, some of the global workforce may never return to the office. According to the PwC US Pulse Survey, 54% of CFOs indicated that their companies plan to make remote work a permanent option. That means managers may soon have to figure out the best way to manage teams that are partially remote.

Many of the traits that have always been important for managers — empathy, clarity, authenticity, and agility — are even more crucial during this time of uncertainty and upheaval. Leaders have been challenged to maintain connection and a sense of belonging within their teams even when they cannot be in the same room together. As leaders begin to stage the return to work, they have an opportunity to leverage new insights and advancements developed during the past several months to reimagine the workplace, rather than attempting a return to business as usual.

“We certainly don’t want to just snap back to the way we were before,” said Karen O’Duil, FCMA, CGMA, financial controller at Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne. “We want to build on this level of flexibility that accommodates everybody.”

Sydney’s biggest social experiment: The plan to turn Waterloo into a ‘world-class precinct’

Waterloo’s housing estate tenants are fighting the government’s attempt to erase the towers from Sydney’s skyline and to save their homes.

It was a hot, stormy day a week before Christmas in 2015 when Anna North ripped open an envelope that had landed in the letterbox of her apartment at a vast public housing estate in inner Sydney.

“Dear tenant, I am excited to write to you,” it read.

A new state-of-the-art metro train station was to be built in Waterloo, and the state government was seizing the opportunity to remake the sprawling 1970s estate, selling off valuable land in the city’s thriving inner south to developers.

Read the full story in SMH.

Wollongong Homeless Hub joins national calls for a support package to help end rough sleeping

An Illawarra-based homelessness service has echoed national calls for a support package to help end rough sleeping. “Successful models such as Housing First used in countries like Finland show that ending homelessness is achievable and more than just a pipe dream,” Mandy Booker, manager of Wollongong Homeless Hub said.

Read the full article in the Illawarra Mercury.