Government must not abandon housing reform


The Victorian Greens have said the Victorian Government’s decision to shelve its plans for a pipeline of funding for new social housing is a major blow to our communities facing housing stress and homelessness.

Earlier today the Treasurer announced the Government’s contentious housing package was “off the table for good” even if Labor was re-elected for another term of government.

The Government seemed to have set up the package to fail after leaving the community sector out of key negotiations and instead trying to reach a compromise deal with a property industry notorious for putting their self-interest before community benefit.  

The Greens say that while the package did not go far enough, the Government’s decision to scrap it completely, rather than going back to the drawing board and working with the community on more meaningful reform, will only delay action on our state’s housing and homelessness crisis.

Leader of the Victorian Greens, Samantha Ratnam, said today’s decision revealed that the Victorian Labor Government cared more about what property developers wanted than actually providing affordable homes for Victorians.

She said the Government had taken the property industry’s donations for years, given them key seats around the policy decision-making table and left the community out of decisions about the future of housing affordability in our state.

The Greens are urging the Government not to abandon housing affordability reform and the introduction of inclusionary zoning.

During the last sitting week the Greens introduced a Bill that would require the Government to develop a plan to end homelessness by 2030.

Quotes attributable to Leader of the Victorian Greens, Samantha Ratnam MLC:

“This is what happens when you let property developers write your housing policy.

“They get to keep making massive profits on the back of more and more people being locked out of being able to afford a home. 

“The Victorian Labor Government has revealed that they care more about what developers want than actually solving the housing and homelessness crisis we face.

“And that’s why this package has fallen apart.

“If the Government was serious about real reform it would go back to the drawing board and consult with the community on a package that Victorians first. One with a social housing levy, inclusionary zoning, and a commitment to build more public housing.

“Until then the property industry will continue to run our housing policy… the same way Transurban seems to run our roads policy and AGL seems to run our energy policy.”