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Greens Back Tenants Union Calls to Give Renters a Fair Go

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Wednesday, 10 August 2022

Tags: Tenant Rights, Tenants Union, Legislation

The Greens support the Tenants Union of Tasmania’s push to reform the outdated and unfair Residential Tenancy Act 1997. 

The Tenants Union have written to the Attorney General, congratulating her on considering reforms to allow tenants to keep their pets, and urging her to go further. We back that call, and suggest the government could do that simply – by supporting the Greens’ Residential Tenancy (Rental Market Reform) Amendment Bill 2021.

When parliament returns, we’ll bring on our Bill to relieve some of the pressures tenants face in an overheated and anxiety-inducing system. Our amendments abolish 'no cause' evictions, implement a system to rein in soaring rents, require reasonable grounds for refusing pets and introduce minimum energy efficiency standards.

As it is now, landlords can issue an eviction solely on the grounds of lease expiration. In the current housing crisis, this antiquated legislation is leaving too many Tasmanians stressed over their tenancies, or completely out in the cold. 

Housing is a basic human right, but too many Tasmanians are being pushed into extreme hardship because of soaring rents. The Greens’ rent control amendments, along with our energy efficiency amendments, would help ease the rising cost of living for tenants. 

No one should have to give away their much loved family pet just to put a roof over their heads, but that’s what’s happening now. We welcome the Liberals’ movement on this issue, and hope they will accept further reforms to prevent heartbreaking choices for tenants.

In a housing and cost of living crisis, Tasmanian renters need a fairer system. Our amendment Bill will go some way towards delivering this.

Our tenants’ rights Bill doesn’t disadvantage owners, but allows tenants the opportunity to plan their budgets through the life of their rental agreement and beyond.  It’s about fairness and peace of mind.

We sincerely hope the Labor and Liberal parties will support these crucial amendments to give renters a fairer go.