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Not one tenant advocate left in QLD while Government moves in to change tenancy laws
Media release: The Tenants Union of Qld
In an aftermath of Tuesday’s state budget not one tenant
advocate will be left in the state. At
the same time, the government has announced it will commence a review of
tenancy law and social housing entitlements.
Tenants’ Union of Queensland Coordinator Ms Penny Carr
said, ‘Apparently it was not enough for the government to cut every local
tenant advice service across the state, which they did last July. They have now completely annihilated any
systemic advocacy for tenants by cutting more funds to the Tenants’ Union of
Until Tuesday the Tenants’ Union had a funded role to
represent the interests of Queensland tenants in policy and law reform
debates. Tuesday’s budget cut the last
elements of tenant advocacy in the state.
Ms Carr continued, ‘At our last meeting with the
Residential Tenancies Authority we were told consultation on changes to tenancy
laws will commence in the last part of the year. Queensland tenants will now be without an
advocate in this process.’
The government has already mooted changes to social
housing entitlements, including, length of tenancy agreements, how issues of
under occupancy are dealt with and stock transfers and as well as rent setting
policy. The TUQ also has had a role in
advocating for public housing and community housing tenants in these debates
but will now have their backs against the wall with no resources to carry out
‘It is hard not to
see the funding withdrawal as anything but a way to silence tenants in upcoming
debates and legislative changes. It is
appalling that Queensland tenants have not one single advocate – funded by
their own bond interest - available to them in the state’, said Ms Carr.
The entire operation of the Residential Tenancies Authority is funded from the interest on tenants’ bonds. A small percent used to go to the Tenant Advice and Advocacy Program for access by Queensland tenants. Additional roles for the Tenants’ Unions’ role in policy and law reform has been jointly funded through bond interest and a small amount of consolidated revenue.