Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader and Housing spokesperson
The Liberals’ lack of genuine motivation to fix the housing crisis was again on display in Parliament today, with two Government ministers offering nothing more than weasel words in response to questions on the housing crisis from the Greens.
When asked about the Liberals’ target to grow the housing wait list to over 5,000 people by June next year, the best Housing Minister Michael Ferguson could do was try to distort history.
The only thing helping Mr Ferguson save some face was the pathetic performance from Minister for Consumer Protection, Elise Archer, that quickly followed. When asked why the Liberals are giving $100,000 to the Tasmanian Residential Rental Property Owners Association (TRRPOA), Minister Archer could only resort to personal attacks.
No matter how much the Liberals try to spin things, the facts are clear. Their plan for housing is leading to more housing stress, higher rents, more evictions, more homelessness, and a growing housing wait list.
While on one hand the Liberals are neglecting the housing needs of everyday Tasmanians, on the other they’re giving tens of thousands of dollars to an incorporated body whose only function is to pursue further wealth for property investors and landlords.
The TRRPOA is not a peak body. It doesn’t provide services. It doesn’t represent a majority of property owners, and it isn’t the only property owners association in Tasmania. Why does it need government funding? Why isn’t this money being spent in an area of need, like helping the Tenants Union to open a northern office?
Given the TRRPOA has been promoting Ms Elliot’s candidacy for Hobart City Council through their social media channels, you have to wonder if this public funding is more about helping her push for election than any public good.
If the Liberals had any real care for fixing the housing crisis, they’d be doing everything they could to keep the housing wait list, which their policies have blown out, under control. Tragically, that’s not the case, and hundreds more struggling Tasmanians will pay the price.