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Monday, 30 November 2015
Page: 14222


Mr BANDT (Melbourne) (16:35): Earlier this year a woman who lives in my electorate, a constituent from Richmond, was doing the laundry in a shared laundry in her block of flats with her four-year-old. The four-year-old went to grab some sheets that had been left in the basin by another tenant. There was a syringe in the sheets, and the four-year-old grabbed the syringe. The family had to endure an agonising wait while the child was tested for HIV and other diseases. This happened in public housing. It happened in an area where the doors are being regularly kicked in by people suspected to be drug dealers because they want to conduct their activities from the halls there. This is one of the 600 constituents who have come into my office over the last few years to complain about what is happening in public housing in Victoria.

More people come to talk to me about public housing than about any other single issue. Things were bad under the Victorian Liberals. We expected that. But we expected things to get better under Labor. Instead the waiting list is now at 34,000 and people are complaining of spending 13 years on this waiting list. In some flats there is mould and children are getting asthma as a result of it. A pensioner couple have spent 13 years on the waiting list and now cannot afford their private rental anymore and are fearing homelessness. We are seeing overcrowding, with up to 11 people in two-bedroom flats. It is time to fix public housing, Labor. Enough is enough. We expected bad from the Liberals but we expect better from you.