Housing Summit Outcomes Released
Today the Palaszczuk Government released the Queensland Housing Summit Outcomes Report. The Summit, held in October, brought together all levels of government alongside the construction industry, the real-estate industry, planners, developers, community services organisations, homelessness advocates and community housing providers.
Premier Palaszczuk noted the Summit as an historic step forward to address housing challenges being experienced in Queensland, Australia, and across the world. The Outcomes Report focuses on expanding housing supply and increasing housing support for Queensland. Key actions announced include:
- $11.7 million to expand tenancy sustainment responses to support vulnerable people to maintain their tenancies
- $10 million to expand private rental assistance products and services for people experiencing severe rental stress
- $10 million to deliver more temporary emergency accommodation with onsite support
- $8.5 million additional support for after-hours homelessness outreach services
- a further $5 million boost to the Immediate Housing Response
- $5 million for a Community Engagement and Awareness Campaign on growth and housing diversity
- $3.3 million for cost of living relief, including emergency relief and food relief
- $2.5 million to support the review of the South-East Queensland Regional Plan
The Summit Outcomes Report details the types of Housing Support initiated and includes:
- expanding rental supports to assist more households at risk of losing their tenancy to sustain private market housing
- delivering critical services such as temporary emergency accommodation to people sheltering in insecure and unsafe situations
- expanding support services (including after-hours outreach services) to link vulnerablepeople who are sleeping rough with temporary emergency accommodation and supports, and
- providing enhanced emergency relief to people experiencing cost of living pressures, including through the provision of critical food relief
While it is hoped that investment benefits in these domains will ultimately flow through to young people, there is a desperate need for tangible and measurable commitments within the Queensland Government’s response to young people experiencing homelessness proportional to their representation within Queensland’s homeless population. The doubling of the Housing Investment Fund to $2 billion – with returns of $130m a year available for social and affordable homes – is welcomed.
This $56 million investment is on top of the $1 billion boost in funding for the Housing Investment Fund announced at the Summit and the $5 million boost for the Immediate Response package that was announced following the Housing Roundtable in September this year. Government is also undertaking an audit of state owned land and buildings for opportunities for residential use and partnering with local governments and non-government organisations to identify similar opportunities. The audit is expected to be completed in three months.
It is evident a number of commitments in the Summit Outcomes Report will provide opportunity for young people to be supported in the wider housing system. However, the fact these supports focus on finance-based products such as rental assistance, does generate some concern. While needed in the short-term, the utilisation of subsidies diverts funds away from bricks and mortar investment and can fuel an already over-inflated housing market.
There’s much to unpack and much more to unveil. We’ll keep you posted in the days and weeks ahead.
Read the Summit report here.