Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Great work, Iemma! $66 mil to upgrade public housing

Well done, NSW Labor.

$66 million to upgrade public housing, and DH is especially pleased to see some of it earmarked for community centres within estates.

While DH does not understand what 66 mil means in practical terms, and she hopes that the 66 by 10 to the 6th will not usher in the era of the Anti-Christ (surely it cant be our Morris???) , she follows the lead of NCOSS and Shelter in praising the govt to the skies. Their press release is reproduced below, just to show that DH doesnt just whinge all the time, but gives credit where due. You may need to adjust your vision to read it...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Media release (joint)

The Council of Social Service of NSW (NCOSS) and Shelter NSW have welcomed the Premier’s announcement of $66 million for community renewal in some of New South Wales’ poorest public housing estates.

“Investment of this kind is long overdue” said NCOSS Acting Director, Ms Michelle Burrell. “Public tenants deserve to live in decent housing, with proper community facilities and safe public spaces. This new investment should deliver on these basic standards.”

“The emphasis on involving tenants in decisions affecting their estate is particularly welcome,” added Ms Burrell. ” Experience shows that top down approaches to community renewal just don’t work.”

“In addition, commitments of this kind need to be made for the long term,” added Ms Mary Perkins, Executive Officer, Shelter NSW.

“What works is local and long term. This is especially so in the light of the rationing of public housing to very, very needy people who don’t have a lot of private resources,” added Ms Perkins.

“Specific resources for employment support are also very welcome,” said Ms Burrell.

“A real job, with proper wages, is the key to breaking the cycle of poverty. Helping public tenants into local employment will help to lift community aspirations, and get a good social mix to ensure the financial sustainability of public housing,” she added.

NCOSS and Shelter NSW would like to see this new approach to community renewal extended to other neighbourhoods where there is entrenched poverty.

Whilst concentrating on public housing estates is a logical first step, solid investment in community infrastructure, human services and employment support in other poverty postcodes must be a priority in the future.

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