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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 11 Hansard (Tuesday, 9 November 2021) . . Page.. 3160 ..

from parents, they will have more access to the market, and it will not be as hard for them. It shows the crisis that people are facing, because not everyone has access to money from other sources. Implying that borrowing money from elsewhere will enable them to purchase is cruel for those who do not have that option. Why should someone who wishes to buy be restricted to borrowing from others just to enable them to buy, particularly if they do not have the option?

The Chief Minister and both ministers for housing said on 29 September that every Canberran, no matter their circumstance, should have access to safe and affordable housing that suits their needs. They are not living up to that rhetoric and they are not doing enough in this space to bring things down. Is the ACT government doing everything it can? If not, it should have no issue passing this motion, before amendments, to declare a housing crisis and have an independent review completed.

There need to be genuine housing choices, not just shallow catchphrases, and options such as more land release for first home buyers in Canberra. Many desire to have a block of land with a decent sized home and a good sized backyard in which to raise their family. Not all Canberrans want to rent or even buy a small unit in town centres or even town houses. Is the answer to this problem to tell them that if they want this they should move to New South Wales? I do not think that is good enough; I think we should enable Canberrans to buy and stay in Canberra, and grow the economy.

We have a stark choice here today. On one hand those opposite, by the looks of it, are going to savagely amend this motion into oblivion. People are laughing out there. There is so much interest in what is going on here today, but if people have a look at the amendment that will be moved, they will see that it just says that there is a crisis in all OECD countries. We cannot really do much to affect land prices in Switzerland, can we? Are we going to get on the phone and lobby Joe Biden about what is going on in the United States? All we can control is what is in our sphere of influence. If the government wants to improve on this motion with specific and effective actions and initiatives, we will welcome it. I will obviously have a little bit more to say on the amendments as we move forward.

MS BERRY (Ginninderra—Deputy Chief Minister, Minister for Early Childhood Development, Minister for Education and Youth Affairs, Minister for Housing and Suburban Development, Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Minister for Sport and Recreation and Minister for Women) (3.51): That was quite the political sermon; almost entertaining, but not quite. There were some interesting perspectives, but it was nice to see that Mr Parton agrees with us that the federal government needs to do more. This morning I spoke in quite a bit of detail about the ACT government’s third report card on the implementation of its housing strategy.

I will not go into much more detail than I did this morning, but there is a general awareness of the national, international, and broader economic factors that impact housing and rental affordability in Canberra and across Australia. You cannot ignore that. The ACT government is getting on with the job of implementing its housing strategy, which I talked about this morning, and has seen support for homelessness services, increased funding for social housing, and a range of measures to increase the amount of affordable rental and affordable home purchase opportunities in the ACT.

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