Liberals Fighting to House Western Australia’s Homeless

Feb 19, 2021 | Health, Plan, State News, WA Jobs, WA Labor

Zak Kirkup and the Liberals will work collaboratively with the not-for-profit sector to tackle the state’s homelessness crisis by providing secure accommodation for vulnerable Western Australians and constructing up to 4,600 additional housing units in the next five years. 

This includes 2,000 new builds in an asset transfer agreement with the not-for-profit sector and fast tracking the government’s pledge to construct 2,600 additional housing units to provide safe and sustainable housing. 

“This is in addition to our $57.5 million commitment to secure 500 additional homeless beds to quickly house homeless Western Australians in safe and secure interim accommodation,” WA Liberal leader Zak Kirkup said. 

“How is it possible that Labor is banking billions in extra revenue, but at the same time the state is facing a homelessness crisis? 

“If Labor keep failing the state on homelessness, the crisis will only get worse once the COVID pause on rent increases and evictions ends in March. 

“The Liberals plan will keep West Australians safe in their home and community, safe in their job and safe from COVID-19.” 

Shadow Minister for Housing Tony Krsticevic said the Liberals were determined to help people break the cycle of homelessness. 

“Our plan to build 4,600 additional housing units will be a big step towards tackling this issue, which has only been made worse by Labor secretly selling off 1,000 public houses,” Mr Krsticevic said. 

“We will undertake an Asset Transfer Program of up to 10,000 housing authority homes to the not-for-profit sector, which can then borrow funds against the assets, enabling the construction of up to 2,000 affordable homes. 

“Constructing these affordable homes in partnership with the not-for-profit sector will also make Commonwealth Rent Assistance available to tenants, which is not the case in State Government housing. 

“This means tenants housed by the not-for-profit sector will now be eligible for Commonwealth Rent Assistance of up to $185 per fortnight, which can be invested in maintenance and save tax-payers money. 

“We will also implement an unsolicited bid process for land to enable the not-for-profit sector to approach government with housing proposals that require either new or existing government land holdings. 

“We are fighting to provide housing solutions for the homeless and a strong future for the West Australian housing sector, including thousands of local jobs for tradies, as part of the Liberals plan to create 200,000 new jobs in the next five years. 

“This is an especially important response to address the forecast housing cliff in 2022/23 resulting from the end of state and federal housing stimulus. 

“We will also ensure that 25% of new house constructions will occur in the regions, as homelessness is not a crisis limited to Perth.”