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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 June 2021) . . Page.. 1952 ..

Mrs Jones interjecting

MADAM SPEAKER: Not helpful, Mrs Jones.

MR PARTON: Minister, given the size of the waiting list, when can Canberrans expect a home for all? Is there a date for delivery of that?

MS VASSAROTTI: I thank Mr Parton for the question. When the ACT Greens went to the election, we absolutely have the aspiration of a decent home for all. We will work with our government partners. This is something on which—I am not going to put a specific date on in relation to this in this Assembly. But we are working to increase the numbers of public housing. We are looking to increase the numbers of affordable housing. There is a vast range of policy initiatives that this government is working on to ensure that everyone does have a decent home. We are getting on with the job. There is still much work to be done, and I will be working every day of this term to ensure that we do all we can to provide a decent home for all.

Housing ACT—maintenance

MS CASTLEY: My question is to the Minister for Housing and Suburban Development. We continue to receive a steady stream of pleas for help from ACT Housing tenants whose maintenance requests are being ignored. The Programmed facilities management contract says that maintenance jobs must be done between one and 20 days from when the request is received by the contractor, depending on the severity of risk to tenants. Unfortunately, this is not what always happens. People are being told by Programmed facilities management that the 20-day time frame begins when the request is approved, not when it is received. Minister, why are these tenants being lied to?

MS BERRY: I do not agree with some of the premise of that question, because of course it has to be from the time the issue is assessed to ensure a time frame for when the matter can be resolved. It has to be. Building contractors have to go out and assess the actual job to find out what is required and then make an assessment on how long it will take and when the job will be done. The suggestion that Programmed contractors, Canberrans who work for Programmed to deliver that work to Housing ACT tenants, are being dishonest is not an entirely correct comment from the opposition. We have to understand the context within each individual job.

MS CASTLEY: Minister, since the Canberra Liberals raised the issue of Housing ACT’s maintenance problems in a motion on 21 April, has anything changed?

MS BERRY: Of course, we want to make sure that public housing properties are maintained and that public housing tenants are supported as much as we possibly can. They are people who do not have the same kinds of chances as everybody else. They do not have the same kinds of opportunities to just run down to Bunnings and fix any issues that they have in their homes.

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