TasCOSS Statement: Federal Housing Debt Relief Welcomed

The Federal Government’s agreement to waive Tasmania’s historical housing debt shows what can happen when Tasmanian voices unite on an issue that matters to our State. Shelter Tasmania, TasCOSS and our industry have fought long and hard to achieve this outcome for over a decade. Your strong and fearless voices and refusal to let the issue go have yielded a positive result for all Tasmanians.

With the number of Tasmanians on the housing register currently sitting at an unacceptable 3,318, the announcement is a welcome step in addressing the housing crisis. More than fourteen years of underinvestment has been acknowledged and right has finally prevailed with the release of an additional $15 million per year dedicated to the construction of social and affordable housing stock.

The decision will make a significant difference long-term and resets the capacity of the State Government to adequately respond to the housing needs of Tasmanians.

In joining with the voices of our industry, Senator Jacqui Lambie, the State Government and media outlets thought the State were instrumental in achieving this outcome for their fellow Tasmanians and must be congratulated. This is an important turning point for Tasmania and its ability to provide homes to people who need them.

That said, a good life for Tasmanians and good social policy decisions should not be reliant on politics and deals. People elect governments to deliver services that respond to need.

The voices of those living the day-to-day reality of nowhere to call home are critical in being loud and clear to our decision-makers. We will continue to bring their voices to the fore and be a strong advocate for Tasmanians living in housing stress.

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