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Rental Snapshot Shows Gov Must Invest In Social Housing, Retain JobSeeker Rate

Media Release
Mehreen Faruqi 1 Sep 2020

The Greens have said that Anglicare Australia’s latest Rental Affordability Snapshot update, released today, has shown that only a tiny percentage of rentals (1 percent or less) are affordable for Australians on low incomes, and this will only get worse if the JobSeeker payment is reduced in the coming months.

Senator Mehreen Faruqi, Australian Greens Housing spokesperson, said:

“Renters are doing it tough during the Covid crisis. With unemployment skyrocketing, many are struggling to make ends meet.

“As bans on evictions and rental increases are wound up across the country, we’re at serious risk of seeing more people pushed into homelessness.

“We need to extend eviction bans nationwide and invest urgently in social housing. Building 500,000 new publicly-owned homes will be critical to solving the housing crisis and ensuring everyone has a place to live.

“The pandemic has revealed that the government has the ability to implement powerful measures to tackle poverty and homelessness. What is lacking is political will,” she said.

Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens Family & Community Services spokesperson, said:

“The Government has no plan to manage the rental stress that is coming in just weeks when JobSeeker is back below the poverty line.

“Anglicare highlights yet again how important a permanent increase to the JobSeeker payment is in ensuring that no one is living in poverty.

“Even with the temporary JobSeeker increase there are still very few affordable properties to rent for people on income support.

“Everyone in our community should have safe, affordable housing and an income to ensure this,” she said.

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