Auditor-General’s report gives Government another reminder that they need to deliver on social housing

The NSW Government has again been called on to deliver policies and programs to ensure the social housing system delivers better outcomes for people in need of housing assistance, says Jan Barham, Greens MP and Housing spokesperson.

“Today’s report by the Auditor-General on community housing recommends that the Government deliver a comprehensive social housing policy and make public its plan for managing public housing assets. After delaying for far too long, it’s time for the Government to act and fix our social housing system,” Ms Barham said.

“This is the third major report to give clear directions about what the Government needs to deliver, following the Parliamentary Inquiry we established in 2014 and a previous Auditor-General’s report in 2013. The Government has failed to meet every deadline it has been given, and it’s time for them to deliver.”

Ms Barham noted that the Auditor-General had also identified that Government needed to improve its handling of transfers to community housing by developing clear performance measures and contracts that ensure the future growth of the sector.

“The Auditor-General notes that there has been strong growth in the community housing sector, which is welcome. Community housing providers across the state are an important part of our housing system, providing not just shelter but connecting disadvantage and vulnerable people with support services that help to improve the quality and stability of their living arrangements,” Ms Barham said.

“Our Parliamentary inquiry had identified the importance of long term leases when public housing is transferred to community housing providers, along with the need for improved tenant outcomes, and the Auditor-General has reinforced these recommendations.

“Community housing providers need to be able to leverage the assets to deliver new social housing. The Government must ensure that their relationships and contracts with community housing providers will secure quality housing and support services for as many people as possible,” Ms Barham concluded.

For Further Comment, please contact Jan Barham directly on 0447 853 891

BACKGROUND:

Auditor General’s Performance Audit Report on Community Housing

Inquiry into Social, Public and Affordable Housing Recommendations and Final Report

Making the Best Use of Public Housing