As with any budget, there were winners and losers. Among this year’s budget losers: the disadvantaged, yet again. Particularly the more than 60,000 people on the NSW social housing waiting list. Despite an additional $1 billion in stamp duty from a booming property market, the government has failed to adequately invest in social housing.
While the budget has allocated $366 million to fund 400 new homes and provide maintenance on thousands of others, this, say advocates, is not nearly enough investment. (About 5,000 new homes — 12 times what has been funded — would need to be built each year for the next three decades to keep up with demand.)
“Depending on where you are and your needs, you can expect to wait more than ten years to be moved into social housing,” said St Vincent de Paul Society NSW CEO, Jack de Groot. “To truly make a difference, the NSW government needs to significantly increase its commitment to build new homes every year. The government has just scored a $1 billion windfall gain in stamp duty … surely we could do much better with our investment?”
Meanwhile, according to polling commissioned by St Vinnies NSW, 84 percent of Labor voters and 81 percent of Liberal voters support an increase in funding to build more social housing across the state.