Housing and homelessness investment delivering for Tasmanians in need

Members,

The Rockliff Liberal Government is working hard to reduce housing stress and homelessness and improve the lives of vulnerable Tasmanians.

The Report on Government Services 2021-22, released today, shows households are receiving more assistance than last year through social housing and our state’s specialist homelessness services are helping more Tasmanians in need.

It’s important to note that RoGS reporting is based on survey results rather than consistent government data sets and relies on the accuracy of organisations completing the surveys.

The annual report shows that the number of households assisted with social housing rose by 242, from 13,870 in 2020-21 to 14,112 in 2021-22.

Total expenditure on housing also remains high, with $243.5 million spent in 2021-22 compared to pre-2020 figures of less than $200 million a year.

Tasmania’s allocation of public housing to greatest need applicants was 98.7 per cent, well above the national average of 83 per cent.

The RoGS data shows social housing providers in Tasmania are managing properties and tenancies efficiently and effectively, with occupancy rates the highest of all jurisdictions and turnaround times the lowest of all jurisdictions.

It also shows social housing providers are providing housing at an affordable level with no households in public housing or state-owned and managed indigenous housing spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent, while only 4.2 per cent of households in community housing paid more than 30 per cent of their income on rent in 2021-22.

The Tasmanian Government’s delivery of more crisis accommodation has allowed the state’s 61 specialist homelessness services agencies to help even more Tasmanians.

In 2021‑22, the Tasmanian Government invested $70.92 per person in the residential population in homelessness services, significantly higher than the national average of $51.86 per person.

On an average day, more than 2,300 Tasmanian clients received support – an increase from almost 2,100 clients a day in 2020‑21 and under 2,000 a day in 2019‑20.

On an average day, there were 310 clients who spent the night in crisis accommodation in 2021-22, an increase from 287 in 2020-21 and 239 in 2019-20, reflecting an increase in the number of crisis accommodation units available.

Every Tasmanian deserves a roof over their head, and we are taking action to ensure this occurs with the most ambitious social and affordable homes plan of 10,000 dwellings by 2032.

In the past 12 months, while the report says the number of long-term social housing properties has decreased, the measurement for housing supply is different to previous years, and an additional 406 units of crisis and transitional accommodation as well as housing provided through Community Housing Providers haven’t been included. As at June 2022, our Dashboard data shows there had been 323 new long term homes built in the past year.

Housing and homelessness is a challenging issue across the nation, which is why the Tasmanian Government provides an unprecedented level of funding targeting homelessness, investing over $36 million each year to ensure those who need help now are getting the services they need.

This includes funding for 17 specialist homelessness services, as well as crisis shelters and supported accommodation. In addition, $6.9 million has been allocated specifically for our Safe Spaces and connected support services.

Our innovative Homes Tasmania authority will also finalise the Tasmanian Housing Strategy, which will set a 20-year vision for the delivery of housing services in Tasmania.

If you are at risk of homelessness or need housing assistance, please contact Housing Connect, 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 800 588.

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