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RWA on Revitalising Public Housing in Redfern-Waterloo

(This article appeared in the RWA Redfern-Waterloo UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2005)

Reforming and revitalising public housing in Redfern-Waterloo, without disadvantaging tenants, is considered a huge task and one that will require considerable research and community consultation. The RWA and the Department of Housing, which owns and administers the large housing estates, intend to work cooperatively and diligently on this project over coming years.

Given the complexities involved and the need to ensure that the interests of tenants and communities are safeguarded, reform of public housing is seen as a priority issue for the future Stage Two of the Redfern-Waterloo Plan. However, detailed research work and community consultation on these issues will be undertaken by the RWA during the Stage One period in order to develop future stages of the Plan [the draft Stage One of the Plan is expected to be released for community consultation later this year].

In order to reassure public housing tenants and in the context of some erroneous media reports at the time, the Minister for Redfern-Waterloo, Frank Sartor, made the following statement in the NSW Parliament on 9 December last year:

“There is zero intention that existing public tenants at Redfern and Waterloo will be moved out of the area. To the extent we may or may not improve the existing public housing...such a task would have to be the subject of extensive consultation.”

The Minister subsequently wrote to all public housing tenants reassuring them of the Government’s commitments, which he also reiterated at a public meeting in Redfern on 9 July 2005. These commitments are:

• There will be no cuts to the amount of public housing;

• Current residents will not be disadvantaged; and

• All public tenancies are secure.

Photo: The Government has guaranteed that public housing tenancies are secure.