Parramatta Affordable Housing Forum

Darryn Capes-DavisCommunity, Parramatta LGA

We All Need a Home

On Wednesday 7th November I attended the Parramatta Affordable Housing Forum hosted by Vinnies, Sydney Alliance, Uniting, Community Management Resource Centre, Parramatta Mission and Uniting Church.

First up was a presentation of the Parramatta Speaks 2018, a survey conducted by Macquarie University, Churches Housing and Sydney Alliance. Infographic summary slides of the survey are presented below.

We asked 160+ people who live, work and travel through Parramatta how the cost of housing affects them
3 in 4 people agreed or strongly agreed that the lack of affordable housing in Western Sydney was a concern
9 in 10 agreed or striongly agreed that everyone has a right to rental housing that is affordable and secure
17 out of 20 disagreed or stringly disagreed that landlords should be able to evict tenants without giving a good reason
2 in 3 disagreed or strongly disagreed thats it's easy for people on lower incomes in Western Sydney to find affordable rental housing
3 in 4 agreed or strongly agreed that new housing developments in Western Sydney should include units that people on lower incomes can afford to rent
6 in 10 disagreed or strongly disagreed that the NSW Government is doing enough to make housing more affordable (and in 1 10 didn't know)

There were questions to all levels of government on what can be done to increase housing affordability. There was unanimous support for implementing SEPP 70 for the City of Parramatta, an option which I also support. There was less support for the call for targets of affordable housing in all new developments.

The call for at least 15% (on private land) and 30% (on government land) was received with mixed support from those representing the various levels of government. While these are high targets, I believe we should striving to do all that is possible to provide affordable housing for those who need it. Perhaps the solution is to divest in government land and attempt to mandate 15% affordable housing targets on all such land?

After all we all need a home.

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