Queensland and federal government in war of words over housing crisis

Daniela PizziraniNCA NewsWire
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Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: News Corp Australia

The Queensland and federal governments are trading blows over the state‘s housing after another damning report.

The Queensland Council of Social Services (QCOSS) report released on Thursday revealed more than 50,000 households were on the waiting list for social housing in the Sunshine State.

The data warned the list could grow by 10,000 if the federal government proceeds with plans to scrap the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS).

The new analysis shows one-third of applicants who are waiting to be housed, have families with children.

More than 90 per cent of those are single-parent households.

Jonathan Dick Tent
Camera IconSome Queenslanders have been forced to camp out in tents amid a major housing crisis. Jay Town Credit: News Corp Australia

QCOSS chief executive Aimee McVeigh said families facing record house prices, low tenancy rates, soaring living costs and a housing shortage were being forced into “unimaginable situations”.

“Women and children are returning to domestic violence situations and living in cars with newborns because there is nowhere else to go,” she said.

“Children are going to school from cars, tents and motel rooms and the situation is getting worse.”

Camera IconQCOSS chief executive Aimee McVeigh said the federal government needed to be doing more to support homeless Queenslanders. David Clark Credit: News Corp Australia

More than 80 per cent of the register’s applications with children have been assessed by the state government as having a high or very high need of social housing.

Community non-for-profit Micah Projects chief executive Karyn Walsh said their workers were seeing women returning with their kids to domestic violence situations and babies as young as two weeks old living out of cars.

“There is literally nowhere to go.” she said.

“Women are returning home back to an abusive partner – which is just not something we as a society should be accepting.”

The report highlighted the grim reality of the commonwealth’s 2023 funding, which would be lower than its 2013 funding.

Camera IconScott Morrison pointed the finger at the state government. NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled Credit: News Corp Australia

QCOSS and more than 11 community organisations have pleaded with the next federal government to fund 5000 social housing dwellings a year in the state.

Scott Morrison said on Thursday his government had provided funding for 15,000 social and affordable homes through the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation.

“State public housing is exactly that, it’s run by the state government and that’s why we provide funds to them to support them,” the Prime Minister told the ABC.

But Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick pointed his finger at the commonwealth for the state’s underfunded housing crisis.

Camera IconTreasurer Cameron Dick slammed Scott Morrison over the state’s housing crisis. Lachie Millard Credit: News Corp Australia

“That (housing crisis) is the legacy of the Morrison government,” he said.

“The Morrison government, the Turnbull government and the Abbott government, they have consistently withdrawn funding from social housing. There is no way that states can fill that gap.”

Mr Morrison blamed the state government for their failure to build more houses and release land for more social housing.

“I mean the best way to get more houses is to build more houses, and so I would encourage the planning authorities (to) work closely with the local community,” he said.

“But we need more houses built. The more houses there are, the less pressure there is on housing prices.”

Originally published as Queensland and federal government in war of words over housing crisis

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