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Friday, November 27

Labour continues to push for homelessness inquiry

Labour has deferred making a decision on the notice of motion to establish a parliamentary inquiry into homelessness in order to allow time to convince Government members of its value, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Moana Mackey.

“All indications were that Government members of the social services select committee were likely to vote against the establishment of any inquiry into homelessness, and so it seemed sensible to delay the vote rather than risk killing any possibility of it going ahead.

“The proposed inquiry has received widespread support from those working at the coalface, and could be a valuable resource for the Government,” Moana Mackey says.

“Figures released today in the Household Economic Survey show that median expenditure on rent has increased 9.5 per cent with nearly 20 per cent of renters now spending more than 40 per cent of their household income on housing.

“These increases will be difficult for many to sustain and combined with record numbers of mortgagee sales, the pressure on emergency and social housing is likely to increase.

“Labour is happy to work with the Minister of Housing and National Party members of the social services select committee to draft terms of reference which are acceptable to the Government, and which allay whatever concerns they may have,” Moana Mackey says.

“I’m not sure what the Government is worried about, but Labour members are more than willing to work with it to come to some kind of agreement which allows an inquiry to proceed."