Older people at risk of homelessness

Older woman sitting on a couch - report cover
'The older I get the scarier it becomes' is a new report into the risk of homelessness for older people in NSW. The report was released on 29th November 2017, during the 2017 National Housing Conference, by the Ageing on the Edge Homelessness Prevention Project. Robert Mowbray, Tenants' Union Project Officer for Older Tenants, represents the TU on the NSW Reference Group for this project.
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#WeLiveHere community action

Brian with his dog Ruby in their apartment
Waterloo renter Brian, with his dog Ruby
#WeLiveHere2017 was a community action led by local residents of Redfern Waterloo. Coloured lights lit up the two social housing tower blocks in Waterloo – Matavai and Turanga – that have dominated the southern skyline of Sydney since 1976. In 2015 the NSW State Government announced the redevelopment of the Waterloo Estate, including six large tower blocks and several low rise dwellings. Some 3,600 residents – many of them elderly or people with a disability – will be relocated in the process. The Tenants' Union spoke to two residents who participated in the #WeLiveHere action, Felix and Brian, to get their perspectives.
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From Millers Point to Glebe

Paddi O'Leary in front of a jacaranda tree.
Paddi, former Millers Point tenant
Paddi O’Leary was a tenant in social housing at Millers Point and participated in tenant action to reverse the policy of relocation and also supported tenants through the process of relocation. She talked with Paul van Reyk from the Tenants' Union about her relocation from there to Glebe. "That was the big thing in all of this, the loss of community. You can’t create it from outside,” said Paddi.
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Sometimes you need help to get on the right track

Raymond Morris with WESTS coordinator Franya Repolusk
Raymond Morris with WESTS coordinator Franya Repolusk
Raymond Morris is a public housing tenant who's very active in his community – he's mentored and supported hundreds of people in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. Last year, Raymond put up a carport at his place to secure his car. However Housing NSW informed him that is was an illegal structure, ordered him to take it down, and also served him with an eviction notice. So Raymond got advice from the Western Sydney Tenants' Advice and Advocacy Service (WESTS) and went to the Tribunal.
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Community Housing Transfers - What's It All About?

Want to know more about the transfer of public housing to community housing? Come to this Shelter NSW & Tenants' Union of NSW Forum.
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It's tough being a 'protected tenant'

Broken roof
A succession of landlords all flatly refused to do repairs on this protected premises. Water had been pouring through the ceiling just inside the front door for months.
We spoke with John, a protected tenant who has been living in his home in Randwick since 1978. We asked him about his experience in a protected tenancy and the ongoing issues he has faced around repairs. Recently the original landlord who John had entered into his tenancy with sold the building. The new owner tried unsuccessfully to evict John. John attributes his success in fighting the eviction in large part to the excellent support he received from a local tenant advocate from the Eastern Area Tenants Advice Service.
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Tenants' Union Annual Report 2015-2016 now online

The cover of the Tenant's Union Annual Report
This year the TU celebrated four decades of working for tenants’ rights. An anniversary such as this is an opportunity to celebrate achievements, acknowledge the many contributors to the journey and take a clear-eyed view on what still needs to be done. You can read more about how we celebrated this milestone in our Annual Report. The report also summarises the TU's activity over 2015-2016 across all our service areas.
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Land Lease Community residents get their day in the Supreme Court

Hastings Point Residents
Paul Smyth (Tenants' Union Residential Parks Legal Officer) has been working with the residents of Hasting Point for the past five years on their court case for compensation for eviction. On 14th November, they had their day in the Supreme Court.
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Home and health

Carol
Carol Carter, Bankstown tenant, with Lorelle Corderoy, Tenant Advocate
Carol Carter is an Aboriginal woman living in public housing in Bankstown in Sydney. In September 2014, Carol received a letter from the Department of Housing in relation to relocating her to another house because of redevelopment happening at the place she currently lives. Carol has lived at her current home for over 14 years. Carol has been receiving help from Greater Sydney Aboriginal Tenants Service (GSATS).
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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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