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Byron Shire
November 27, 2022

Homeless single women

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I agree with Mandy, the demographic for our Shire includes many homeless single women. The problems are many and are compounded by the fact that accommodation costs have inflated to an unaffordable level for many.

I live in Bayside Brunswick Heads and The Kollective have proposed a large affordable boarding house complex for our area. I attended a meeting with Kate Singleton and Lisa Sandstorm, who informed attendees that the objective is to house professional couples – at a rate of $400 per week. They also said that there would be some rooms available for single women at the so-called affordable rate of $360 per week. My mind just spun – a room of 12m2 is supposed to be affordable at $360 a week? It just pissed me off.

This is developer cashing in on a government-funded incentive scheme to provide affordable housing. Taxpayer funded will line the pockets developers, with no long-term affordable housing provided – as they can sell it off after five short years. They are self-regulated, i.e. no one will monitor how many residents are in each room, or check if they are being charged this so-called discounted rate.

So far the ‘affordable’ housing they have built in Mullumbimby sold for $550k each. So how is a one room shoebox worth so much? People bought them, Simon Richardson says it’s a good thing – far out! A good thing for Byron Shire?

It has just inflated house prices again! The one they had to rent out is priced at $550 per week. I say that at that rate everyone who has a granny flat would automatically put the rent up. So up and up it goes, where it stops nobody knows. Bring back the old social housing which is not sold off after a few years; it was a far better provider of long-term affordable housing.

I lived in Teven Street, opposite the nine unit social housing complex, and it is still providing affordable rent for those few lucky tenants. Forget lining the pockets of developers, who we know have provided houses in Sunrise Beach that are problematic for people living in them as the walls are so thin. There’s nowhere for residents to park their cars that now crowd the streets and they what I consider to be an outrageous rent.

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