Uniting Vic.Tas supports the intent of the Human Rights and Housing Legislation Amendment (Ending Homelessness) Bill 2022 tabled by the Victorian Greens to eliminate homelessness in Victoria by 2030.
Uniting Vic.Tas in partnership with Uniting Housing Victoria operate and support more than 870 social and affordable housing tenancies across the state.
Additionally Uniting has pledged $20 million to help build 500 new affordable housing projects across Victoria over the next five years.
As a provider of social housing as well as multiple services that interact with people at different stages of housing crisis, Uniting has called on the Victorian Government to legislate and invest in a homelessness and housing strategy that adequately meets the current and increasing demand for housing support in the state.
Uniting Vic.Tas CEO Bronwyn Pike said “affordable, safe and secure housing for everybody is an essential human right.
“Safe and secure housing is a major factor in helping get a person’s life on track. Often, it’s only once a person secures housing, they’re able to address any issues they may have with employment, family violence, mental health, alcohol or drugs,” Ms Pike said.
“In my years of experience I know, and we all know, that so many often quite expensive and complex interventions we offer to people who are in great need can fall down the minute they exit those programs because they do not have a place to live.
“The pandemic has thrown Victoria’s shortage of social and affordable housing into stark relief and given more people than ever before an insight into housing security.
“Uniting’s services saw a significant increase in demand for services, many from people who had never access crisis support before.
“As we slowly emerge from the pandemic, the resolution to provide adequate social and affordable housing in every neighbourhood in both metropolitan and regional Victoria must be our top priority.
“Legislating housing as a human right is courageous and bold leadership, which will hold governments and housing providers like ourselves responsible and accountable to provide more housing for the most vulnerable Victorians.”