NEWS

A flood, repairs, and an attempted eviction

Geoff Mansfield
Geoff Mansfield, Central Coast tenant
My family and I had been living in our place for three years. It wasn’t a a bad property – there’s a nice view over Budgewoi Lake (although the lake can get a bit smelly!). Then there was a flash flood and our yard was flooded. We were without power for eight days and there was damage to the house too. The water rose up a fair way and the back fence came down. This meant that the back of our property was open to the lake.
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The importance of a secure home

Carol and Vivian
Carol and Vivian, social housing tenants
Firstly, to introduce us, I am Carol (on the left in the picture) and my sister is Vivian (on the right). We are social housing residents living in Riverwood and have lived here since 1984. Originally we were in a third-floor unit on – a word I dislike – a housing estate. Because Vivian had a health problem we were given a transfer a short distance away to a small villa. Our introduction to the Tenants’ Union of NSW was while I was doing a Diploma of Community Work/Welfare at TAFE around 2007.
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Fighting evictions in residential parks

Jill Edmonds
Jill Edmonds, park resident
In 1990 I bought a manufactured home in a residential park (now called a ‘residential community’). I knew there was an element of risk in using my meagre retirement funds to become the owner of an ‘affordable’ house located on land owned by someone else. I did not know it was possible that park owners who had approval for redevelopment were permitted to evict pensioner residents and take ownership of their homes with no legal requirements for compensation. I thought such things could only happen in third-world countries!
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Shining a light on tenants rights

Sharon Callaghan
Sharon Callaghan, former Advocate
Sharon Callaghan, former Tenant Advocate in the Illawarra, reflects on the fight for tenants' rights in the 1980s and 1990s. In the early 1980s Sharon was a community worker at the Community Youth Support Scheme (CYSS), where housing and tenancy were significant problems for those living on low fixed incomes, trying to rent or living in boarding houses. The downturn in the steel industry and economic crisis of that time worsened the poverty for young people and families without paid employment.
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My home is like my castle

Lewin George
Lewin George, Marrickville tenant
Home means security for me – this is where I feel safe. My home is like my castle, even though it's one room at the back of my landlord's house. I also like to go out, but I value my privacy when I’m at home. The landlord's dogs are good, they keep watch.
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A strong voice for tenants

Charmaine Jones, with TU staff, Patrycja, Jemima, Anne and Julie
Charmaine Jones, with TU staff
Charmaine Jones, social housing tenant and Tenants' Union Treasurer, reflects on her involvement with the TU and the changes in the sphere of social housing.
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Stories from 40 years of advocacy

Robert Mowbray
Robert Mowbray, TU Project Officer
Robert Mowbray was a founder of the TU and continues to be active in the movement for the rights of tenants through his work as the TU Older Tenants Project Officer and his work with residents of Miller's Point. In this article for Tenant News Robert recounts some his favourite stories from his years of activism.
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Drawing on the past, taking on the future

Ned Cutcher
Ned Cutcher, TU Senior Policy Officer
Ned Cutcher, Senior Policy Officer of the Tenants' Union reflects on 40 years of advocating for tenants' rights and the big ticket items that remain. Drawing on the experience and expertise we’ve gathered over the last four decades, the TU celebrates its 40th anniversary with a bold new plan. We’re working towards a society where low-income households can access secure, liveable and affordable rental housing, and in the meantime we’ll make a positive difference to the lives of people who rent in New South Wales.
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