Tenants' Union Reconciliation Action Plan launched
The Tenants' Union of NSW proudly launched our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) on 13th September 2017 – the 10th anniversary of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Inspiring leader and friend of the TU, Uncle Ivan Simon gave a powerful speech to launch the RAP and singer songwriter Leah Flanagan brought stories of her people to life through her music. Uncle Jimmy Smith gave the Welcome to Country.
Developing the TU's RAP has involved a lot of of work by TU staff, Board Members and Aboriginal Advisory Committee members, to whom we are very grateful. The RAP is a guide to ensuring reconciliation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is built into all aspects of the TU's work.
The TU's vision for reconciliation is for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living in New South Wales to have access to safe, secure and affordable housing.
The conditions of rental housing for Aboriginal tenants in Redfern was one of the reasons that drove activists and community workers to form the Tenants’ Union in 1976. Since then, The Tenants’ Union has been advocating for NSW tenants and this has always included Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tenants.
The Tenants’ Union acknowledges that a lack of support for non-tenancy issues such as intergenerational trauma, mental health issues, financial hardship, substance dependence, family violence, and disabilities can often lead to an escalation of tenancy issues and result in tenants receiving termination notices and/or suffering other negative outcomes such as accruing large rent arrears.
The Tenants’ Union believes that a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is an important step in recognising this history and its current impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as well as an opportunity to work for a reconciled Australia. The RAP has also been developed to solidify and further our commitment to Reconciliation.
The Tenants’ Union seeks to work alongside Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and individuals to bring about positive change in housing security and affordability. The RAP will underpin our work to support, resource and enable strong advocacy for Aboriginal housing justice. The RAP will achieve this by putting in place actions and structures that will amplify the voice of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the housing policy and legal agenda; enable partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and inform our work for housing justice.