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Affordability Summit must also tackle indigenous housing.



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Kelvin Thomson MP Shadow Minister for Regional Development and Roads; Housing and Urban Development Federal Member for Wills Senator Kim Carr Shadow Minister for Public Administration and Open Government Indigenous Affairs and Reconciliation Labor Senator for Victoria

31 May 2005

AFFORDABILITY SUMMIT MUST ALSO TACKLE INDIGENOUS HOUSING

If the Prime Minister is serious about Indigenous housing issues he must ensure these are raised in August with State and Territory Governments at the Housing Affordability Summit.

Minister Lloyd and Senator Patterson have had to be dragged along to this summit by State and Territory leaders after presiding over plummeting housing affordability and spiralling homelessness throughout the Howard Government's term of office.

Indigenous community leaders must also be invited to participate in this Summit.

The Prime Minister claims he supports Indigenous home ownership.

The fact is that the Prime Minister is completely out of touch with the reality of the indigenous housing situation.

Patrick Dodson today pointed to the futility of any attempt to force Indigenous Australians living in rural and remote communities into home ownership.

But the availability of affordable and appropriate housing for Indigenous people across Australia remains a critical issue - whether this housing is rented or owned.

In 2001, Indigenous Australians made up 2.4 per cent of the Australian population, but comprised 9 per cent of homeless people and 19 per cent of those sleeping rough.

Close to 7 per cent of Indigenous homes contain 10 or more people, compared to 0.1 per cent of non-Indigenous households.

Indigenous leaders must be offered the opportunity to put the facts on the table and work towards real solutions alongside Commonwealth, State and Territory Ministers.

31 May 2005

Ends Canberra 31/05/2005 Contact: Cora Trevarthen 0418/770484