Hard-fought housing funding should be immediately handed over to Indigenous and Islander communities to address the chronic shortage in remote communities.
Shadow Finance Minister Fiona Simpson and Shadow Minister for Local Government Ann Leahy addressed the Torres Cape Indigenous Council Alliance meeting in Cairns and said the councils should be empowered to get on with the job.
“There is $100 million of dollars of funding on the table for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and this funding is needed to address remote communities housing needs,” Ms Leahy said.
“The $105 million Capital Housing Program was approved by the former Federal Government in 2019 to alleviate overcrowding in Indigenous communities.
“These communities are some of the most disadvantaged in the state.
“Indigenous Leaders have been raising the problems of overcrowding for years.
“Overcrowding often leads to other social problems like domestic violence or alcoholism.
“They must be given the funding now.”
Shadow Finance Minister Fiona Simpson said it was the State Government’s responsibility to empower councils to get on with the job.
Ms Simpson said the Housing Minister confirmed in a parliamentary Question on Notice that projects were only ‘expected’ to get under way this year, despite the funding being approved in 2019.
“These communities shouldn’t have to wait any longer,” she said.
“The Torres Cape Indigenous Council Alliance Leaders and their communities have told us they are directly impacted by overcrowding and they need to retain this funding so they can grow their own skills and trade locally.
“The Auditor-General’s scathing report on social housing was shameful.
“This government doesn’t know who are the most vulnerable, they don’t know how many homes to build, and they don’t know how to fix the problem they’ve created.
“It is completely unacceptable.
“Queenslanders deserve so much better than this.”