$396 million for remote Indigenous housing in NSW
Remote Indigenous communities in New South Wales will benefit from a $396 million investment in housing over the next ten years to improve living standards for families and children.
The funding allocation is central to the landmark $1.94 billion Council of Australian Governments’ commitment to remote Indigenous housing.
The NSW share of the Remote Indigenous Housing National Partnership will fund the construction of new houses, major upgrades to existing houses and ensure the reliable and consistent management and maintenance of housing.
This funding builds on the significant $6.4 billion social housing component of the Rudd Government’s Nation Building and Jobs Plan.
This funding will be spent over four years on social housing construction, repairs and maintenance.
Federal Indigenous Affairs Minister, Jenny Macklin said it was expected that a very substantial proportion of the $6.4 billion would be invested in social housing in urban and regional New South Wales.
Existing social housing dwellings would be upgraded and new houses, incorporating design features to improve living standards and reduce living costs, would be built.
“Decent housing underpins the Australian Government’s comprehensive agenda to close the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” Ms Macklin said.
“Housing is central to protecting children, getting them to school, improving health and hygiene and shaping parents’ everyday norms like going to work.
“Secure tenure underpins the Government’s significant investment in Indigenous housing and is necessary to improve housing in Indigenous communities.
“It is also essential to protect assets and to make sure ongoing repairs and maintenance are done.
“Substantial investment in housing also opens up important employment and training opportunities for Indigenous people, particularly in regional centres,” Ms Macklin said.
NSW Housing Minister David Borger welcomed the new funding and said the State Government would work closely with the Commonwealth to ensure it was invested in the right areas.
“We believe that good housing is a health need and so this new investment from the Commonwealth is very welcome,” Mr Borger said.
“We will be working closely with the Commonwealth and Indigenous Community Housing Organisations to ensure that Indigenous people in NSW receive the full benefit of this funding.”