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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 11 Hansard (15 November) . . Page.. 3495..

Motion, as amended, agreed to.

Community housing

DR FOSKEY (Molonglo) (11.14): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) recognises the growing importance of community housing in the provision of both social housing and affordable housing across Australia;

(2) notes:

(a) that the ACT Government's Affordable Housing Steering Group is due to make a final report in March 2007; and

(b) community concern that the Government appears to be moving away from its general support for community housing; and

(3) calls on the ACT Government to:

(a) develop a policy for community housing in partnership with both the community housing sector and the Affordable Housing Steering Group;

(b) produce an action plan for that policy; and incorporate the plan within the ACT Government's 2007-08 budget.

I have moved this motion today to elicit a public commitment to community housing from the government and in the hope that a plan to support the growth and development of the sector can be put in place in time for the next budget. This motion focuses on the more traditional notion of community housing, which is a form of social housing that is open to people on low incomes and takes some account of a newer category that the sector describes as affordable housing, which is the provision of housing at less than market rent to people for whom public housing is not available but for whom public rents are too high.

In calling on the ACT government to recommit to support the community housing sector, we need to understand its changing shape as well as its profound value. AHURI research from 2003 titled "How does community housing help strengthen communities"found:

Community housing providers, community stakeholders and tenants explicitly identify community-building objectives as an important element of their activities.

Collectively, community housing providers undertake a range of activities from improving housing access, personal development, brokering more effective access to community services, supporting social and economic engagement by tenants and supporting economic initiatives.

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