Housing Matters – November 2019

CEOs Message

Welcome to the November issue of Housing Matters.

This month is of course AGM season and it has been great to watch so many of the community housing providers report such fantastic results, most importantly in terms of how they have continued to grow and help more low-income families across NSW obtain safe, secure and affordable housing.  With more than 50,000 properties across the State, the sector is now a critical part of the social and affordable housing framework.  Our collective job is to work to continue to grow as the demand for housing is also increasing and too many individuals and families don’t yet have a place to call home that they can afford.

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Housing Matters – October 2019

Housing Matters

CEO Report

Welcome to the October edition of Housing Matters.

CHIA NSW and its members are working hard with partners in Government and the private sector to reduce the number of NSW low-income families in housing stress.  The challenge is a big one – with considerable unmet demand for low-income housing in communities across the State.  The community housing sector will continue to use all the resources it can to meet this challenge, because whilst we build, own and manage houses, what we are most focused on is providing homes to people.  Community housing providers own or manage more than 50,000 homes across NSW, and we are proud of the work we do in helping low-income families to find secure and affordable housing.

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Housing Matters September 2019

Housing Matters

CEO Report

Welcome to the September edition of Housing Matters – another busy month for the community housing sector.

Last week, we held a fantastic CHIA Exchange with more than 100 participants across the sector participating on the day across several separate work streams – more details are below.

In other sector news, Hume Housing has completed its Social Housing Management Transfer of 2,200 properties and officially opened its new regional office in Maitland earlier this month – congratulations to all the team at Hume for their fantastic work on the transfer.

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ACHIA Newsletter September 2019

Strategic Planning Day

We recently held our strategic planning day with the ACHIA committee and had Justin Noel from Origin communications facilitate the day. All the feedback from consultations held with ACHIA members helped to enhance the direction of the day.

Once we have the finalized strategic plan we will be consulting with members from the northern, southern and western region to see if we have captured everything that was said.

ACHIA Central and Western Aboriginal Community Housing Provider Forum

On the 19th September we will be holding our 2nd ACHIA Central and Western Aboriginal Community Housing Provider Forum any ACHPs or LALCs who wish to attend please let us know so we can cater on the day and add you to the email list. This forum gives us a chance to get together and discuss housing related topics and help inform each other about what is happening in the sector.

Contact: Chadr@communityhousing.org.au or Ph.  0438 038 269

CHIA Exchange Dates

CHIA NSW hosts a series of member events as a key part of the services we provide to the community housing sector in NSW. In the last twelve months, these events have included two CHIA Exchanges, the Good Growth Housing Conference, the NSW Aboriginal Housing Caucus, several report and toolkit launches and a diverse range of smaller workshops both in Sydney and our regional areas. These events are pivotal to our role of assisting NSW housing providers to develop and maintain their services as well as to help build skills and capacities within their own organisations.

The CHIA Exchange is a regular sector wide opportunity for all CHIA NSW members to hear from industry leaders regarding sector innovation and policy updates. It also provides a forum to share ideas and networking opportunities.

As part of a review of member feedback and support for the CHIA Exchange, we have considered how the Exchanges are delivering on member expectations and needs.
We are delighted to advise that this year we have changed the format of the CHIA Exchange to make it easier for more of our members and their staff to attend.

There will be three CHIA Exchanges this year as follows:
Tuesday 24th September, 2019 (Networks: Asset Managers, Operations Managers, Planning & Development, Community Development, CHP Aboriginal Staff Network, Emerging Leaders)

Wednesday 12 February, 2020 (Networks: Asset Managers, Operations Managers, NDIS, CHP Aboriginal Staff Network, Emerging Leaders)

Wednesday 10th June, 2020 (Networks: Asset Managers, Operations Managers, Planning & Development, Community Development, CHP Aboriginal Staff Network, Emerging Leaders)

Venue: Rydges Central Sydney, 28 Albion Street.

As usual, entry is provided free to staff of CHIA NSW full members, with any non-members charged a small fee to attend where appropriate.

Registrations for the September event are open now via this link. We will send a link for registrations to the 2020 events closer to the date. For any information regarding the CHIA Ex, please contact Annette at annetteb@communityhousing.org.au

Last chance- complete survey on Capacity Building for Aboriginal Community Housing Providers by this Friday

Please help us by completing this important survey.  It will take no more than five minutes.  The survey asks you if you have any further training or support needs to help you get ready for the National Regulatory System for Community Housing or the NSW Local Scheme (NRSCH / NSW LS)

The survey also asks about the capacity building program run by CHIA NSW in 2018 and 2019.

Your views are essential to the development of the sector and we would be very grateful if you could take a little time to provide your feedback.

If you have any questions about this survey, please contact Paula Coghill at
paulac@communityhousing.org.au

Still time to join the peak body 

The purpose of ACHIA is to be the industry body for Registered Aboriginal Community Housing Providers in NSW and in doing so, to:

• promote the human rights of all Aboriginal people in NSW to decent, affordable and secure housing;
• promote the right of all Aboriginal people to self-determination, including the right to choose a culturally appropriate social landlord;
• develop and support public policy which promotes a more just housing system for Aboriginal people in NSW;
• in partnership with counterpart organisations across Australia, develop and promote policy at a national level for housing justice and self-determination for Aboriginal people;
•  support the development of best practice in the provision of housing for Aboriginal people by encouraging networking and collaboration between Aboriginal Community Housing Providers; and
• support the provision of culturally appropriate housing by mainstream community housing providers.

ACHIA has been actively advocating and representing through various fora to ensure the voice of Aboriginal Community Housing is being heard and now have established ongoing relationships with our key stakeholders.

Continuing work will include;

  • Chairing of the Aboriginal Housing Office, Aboriginal Social Housing Strategy (ASHS) Peak Reference Group established to support the AHO in the development of the sector investment strategy, priorities and other support initiatives
  • Co-Host of the Aboriginal Housing Caucus 2019
  • Member forums to gather feedback and help shape the future path for ACHIA
  • FACS Aboriginal Outcomes in Housing Working Group (AOIH)

Join now for your free Membership and get access to CHIA NSW member benefits as well  
(Please note voting rights to Community Housing Industry Association NSW are reserved for CHIA  NSW full members )

Please see all form link below on becoming an ACHIA member

ACHIA membership form

Housing Matters August 2019

Housing Matters

CEO Report

Welcome to the August edition of Housing Matters. You will notice that we have changed the format and presentation of Housing Matters to make it easier to access on smartphones and tablets. This is the first step in improving the access to the newsletter – more changes will be coming over the coming months to allow you to access Housing Matters wherever you are and not miss out on the important sector news each month.

In this edition, CHIA NSW is delighted to announce the dates of our CHIA Exchanges for the financial year ahead.  With a shorter format, CHIA NSW is looking forward to the Exchanges once again delivering fantastic learning and networking opportunities for our members and partners.

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Housing Matters July 2019

Housing Matters

CEO Report

Community housing providers have been in the news this month with Hume Community Housing signing a MOU with the Tharawal Aboriginal Corporation and Tharawal Aboriginal Housing Corporation to work together to improve housing and social outcomes across South West Sydney. I was fortunate to be able to attend the ceremony and it was a great celebration of community and the culmination of an enormous amount of hard work. More details on the partnership are below – congratulations to all.

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Housing Matters June 2019

Housing Matters

CEO Report

The community housing sector has seen some welcome news this month with NHFIC announcing the launch of its Capacity Building Program which we hope will help support our ability to deliver more social and affordable housing in the community. More details on the program are provided below.

CHIA NSW also welcomes the Premier’s statement that homelessness is one of the areas that will receive her priority focus.

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Housing Matters May 2019

CEO Report

Welcome to the May 2019 edition of Housing Matters – my first as CEO of CHIA NSW.

I am excited to take on the role here at CHIA NSW, and the first few weeks have already indicated that there are plenty of opportunities and challenges for us to address on behalf of our members and community housing tenants across NSW.

Both the NSW State and Federal elections have returned incumbent Governments, but a range of Ministerial and departmental changes mean there is plenty for CHIA to do in forging new and strengthening existing relationships with Government.  The new Federal Government Ministerial appointments are welcomed by the community housing sector and these developments are outlined elsewhere in this Edition.

At the State level, CHIA has been busy engaging with the new Government.  We have already met with Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services Gareth Ward and will meet both Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes and Water, Property and Housing Minister Melinda Pavey in early June.  We are working hard to understand the ramifications of these Ministerial changes as well as working with our departmental and other stakeholders to see how we can best collaborate to improve community housing policy and outcomes.

Elsewhere in this Edition, there are some great articles on new research from AHURI on the business case for social housing as infrastructure, the opening of the new round of AHO grants and CHIA’s visits with Councillors from the Hills Shire to community housing developments in Western Sydney.  Don’t forget also the CHIA Exchange and NDS Accommodation sub-committee Roundtable on June 11th (details below).

I look forward to working with our members and stakeholders to promote the positive role of community housing in NSW.

Mark Degotardi, CEO

Federal election outcome

The Liberal-National Coalition’s federal election win has been met with mixed feelings by the community housing sector.  Significant progress was made in the previous term of government with the establishment of the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation.

The community housing industry was hoping that NHFIC signalled the start of broader government support for social and affordable rental housing growth.  In the build up to the election, the Coalition was largely silent on its plans for social and affordable housing.  Labor on the other hand, took a potentially game-changing affordable housing policy to the election, announcing it would launch a program to deliver 250,000 new affordable rental homes over the next decade.

The Coalition victory means then that there is uncertainty about national housing policy, certainly it would appear that an NRAS mark 2 is off the table.  There may though still be cause for optimism.  On 26 May, the Prime Minister, the Hon Scott Morrison announced that his new Ministry would include the Hon Michael Sukkar as Minister for Housing, under the Treasurer.

CHIA NSW is hopeful that this signals that the Morrison-McCormack Government recognises that housing is a key economic issue.  This is the argument that CHIA NSW has been making through its research agenda and we think the evidence is clear that affordable rental housing is positive for the economy.

Mr Luke Howarth MP has also been appointed Assistant Minister for Community Housing, Homelessness and Community Services which is the first time community housing has been part of a title in a Federal government ministry.

The productivity benefits of affordable rental housing means that it should be a bi-partisan issue and CHIA NSW looks forward to working with partners and the new Coalition Government to shape effective housing policies that benefit all Australians.

The Business Case for Social Housing: AHURI Report

AHURI has released its next report in the Social Housing as Infrastructure series. The business case for social housing as infrastructure looks at how to develop a cost-benefit analysis (CBA) for new social housing investment proposals, and it works through some of the challenges of CBA for social housing.

CBA are common for infrastructure projects, and they provide a clear framework for analysing social housing projects. They can also clearly present the productivity benefits of social and affordable housing.

But AHURI notes that CBA often exclude the non-financial benefits of social housing and the outcomes that cannot be easily monetised. The report looks at a range of ways of estimating housing benefits.

Other appraisal methods could suit social housing projects better, including an avoided cost methodology. This approach considers how the security of social housing can deliver avoided costs for other public services, for example the public health and justice systems. It is often used in the public service and is accepted by Treasuries when it is backed up by a rigorous evidence base.

Ultimately this research finds that policy decisions and the intersections between analysis and political decision making are complex and are not as driven by economic rationalism as is assumed.  Could it be that investment in social housing is a political call after all?

Hills Shire councillor visits

This month, councillors from the Hills Shire visited three developments in Western Sydney to see firsthand how community housing providers are delivering quality homes for people.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This day was organised by CHIA NSW in partnership with the GSC, which is engaging with councils about affordable housing.  Visitors included 5 councillors from the Hills Shire, staff from the Hills Council, commissioners and staff from the GSC and a group from Landcom.

 

 

 

 

The party was hosted by SGCH at its Westmead development, Wentworth at its St Marys development and by Evolve at Harts Landing.  The councillors seemed impressed by what they saw and they certainly engaged on the issues, asking questions about tenants, management, planning processes and design.

Local councillors are a key stakeholder for CHIA NSW and finding creative ways like these visits are a valuable tool to influence them about affordable housing.  Getting support from local government councillors for affordable housing will be critical as councils explore ways to address need through local planning systems.  Support from councillors can also make the difference when community housing providers are working to deliver projects in local communities.

If you are interested in working with CHIA NSW to engage with local councillors please get in touch with Tom Kehoe (tomk@communityhousing.org.au)

Aboriginal Partnerships: building cultural competence

Adam Hansen, CHIA NSW’s Aboriginal Partnerships Specialist has been working on rolling out the Aboriginal Cultural Competency Standards self-assessment tool to CHPs and providing support to CHPs who are using it to promote culturally competent practice.  He has also been providing advice and practical guidance on how CHPs can build stronger relationships with local Aboriginal communities, tenants and organisations.

So far Adam has run five cultural competency standards sessions around the state and has four more scheduled in the next two months.

He also held or took part in seven sessions designed to bring CHPs closer to Aboriginal CHPs and the wider Aboriginal community, as well as re-energising the Aboriginal Staff Network.

Please get in touch with Adam via adamh@communityhousing.org.au if you would like advice or an Aboriginal Outcomes workshop.

There is plenty of work to be done in this space and while Adam has made a good start, he would like to invite any CHPs who haven’t contacted him already to get in touch if they would like advice on supporting Aboriginal Outcomes or implementing the Aboriginal Cultural Competency standards.  Adam can hold workshops or just provide informal guidance.

Adam will also be sharing some best practice case studies from the sector, re-convening the reference group and the Aboriginal staff networks and working with the Aboriginal Housing Office on their peer learning and mentoring initiative.

Round 2 of AHO’s IT Grants Program is now open

We are pleased to announce that Round 2 of the AHO’s grants program is now open and you can submit applications via CHIA NSW’s website. Applications can be accepted until 5 p.m. on 5 July. Grants will range from $15,000 to up to $70,000 depending on how many homes you manage.

The IT Grants Program is aimed at Aboriginal Community Housing Providers (ACHPs) that are registered or intend to become registered under the National Regulatory System for Community Housing (NRSCH) or the NSW Local Scheme (NSWLS). The IT grants will allow your organisation to invest in technologies that improve performance and reporting, increase access to IT training to make the best use of new technologies, and become as efficient as possible in the areas of tenancy and asset management.

The objectives of the grants program are to:

  • Provide funding to access the latest technologies to increase productivity and competitiveness
  • Access to IT training to help you use new technologies more effectively
  • Funding to create business efficiency through the introduction of technology in the areas of tenancy management and asset management

What are the assessment criteria?
To help with your application please read the following documents. These are also available here

What can the AHO IT grants be used for?
Your organisation can decide what the IT grant will be used for as long as it falls under at least one of these areas:

  • Organisational capacity: improving the capabilities of your office and IT systems
  • Reporting systems: IT system(s) to maintain asset/properties/tenancies and to create and provide reports to different agencies
  • IT training: to improve the IT skills of your organisation’s workers and make their workplace more IT friendly
  • Digital capability: specialised digital technology or software (business specific), content development (web site and pages, mobile applications, visual and audio media etc.) and related training

To find out more information, including what IT grants are available, please visit the CHIA NSW website

AHURI National Housing Conference

Register now for the National Housing Conference (NHC), which will be held in Darwin for the first time August 27–30. This year’s program will shine a spotlight on Indigenous housing, drawing on the unique experiences and opportuneness facing the housing sector in the Northern Territory.

The NHC is the largest gathering for the social and affordable housing sectors in Australasia, convened every two years by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI).

The NHC plays an important role in guiding the national dialogue on housing and homelessness priorities, providing a platform for housing practitioners, policy makers and researchers to share, debate, celebrate and promote impactful ideas. Delegates will have the opportunity to be a part of the conversation, forge new partnerships, and work towards innovative housing solutions.

Attended by key decision makers from all sectors, this is a must-attend for anyone wanting to be a part of Australia’s housing future. Register now: www.nhc.edu.au

Partnering to ensure better SDA outcomes: a CHIA Ex and NDS Roundtable

Date: Tuesday 11 June 2019

Time: 9.30am- 3pm

Venue: Mercure Sydney, 818-820 George St, Chippendale NSW 2007

Register via Eventbrite

CHIA NSW is partnering with NDS, the peak body for disability service providers, to deliver a roundtable event bringing together community housing providers and supported independent living providers (SILs) who work together to deliver specialist disability accommodation.

With a practical focus, the event will be an opportunity to unpack the key challenges for CHPs and SILs to identify how can we work together to deliver the best possible outcomes for people with disability living in SDA. The idea is to develop a shared advocacy position that CHIA NSW and NDS can take forward.

Review of CHC42215 Certificate IV in Social Housing

A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) has been established by SkillsIQ to review the current CHC42215 Certificate IV in Social Housing. The TAC comprises a number of representatives from community housing providers, homelessness support services and training organisations. Others will be able to review and comment on the proposed changes in the near future as the proposal is finalised. To date the proposal is for a Certificate IV in Housing with specialisations in Social Housing and Homelessness Support Workers. It is expected that there will be an increase in the number of units’ studied from 15 to 18 and more emphasis on client care. The following outlines the proposal to date.

Current Certificate IV in Social Housing Proposed Certificate IV in Housing
15 units with 8 core and 7 electives 18 units with 12 core and 6 electives
No specialisation Specialisation in Social Housing and Homelessness Support Work
Removed from core units:

Manage and maintain tenancy agreements and services – removed to specialisation

New units  in core are:

Provide brief interventions

Respond effectively to behaviours of concern

Promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural safety

Provide services to people with co-existing mental health and alcohol and other drugs issues

New Unit – Sustainable Tenancies

The units for social housing which will make up the specialisation include:

Social Housing – Group A Electives Homelessness Support Work Group B Electives
Manage and maintain tenancy agreements and services Provide advocacy and representation services
Manage housing application processes Develop, facilitate and review all aspects of case management
Manage housing allocations Recognise and respond appropriately to domestic and family violence
Manage tenancy rent and rent arrears Work effectively in trauma informed care / Implement trauma informed care
Manage vacant properties
Respond to property maintenance enquiries

The issue that has been raised by some organisations is the inability to include the unit Represent the organisation in a court of tribunal in the Certificate IV.

CTSH will be sending out a questionnaire shortly to discuss the proposed changes.

Fantastic Training Opportunities

CRA Training Returns

Jennifer Townsend will be leading a workshop on CRA at CHIA NSW offices on Tuesday 18th June for $300 per participant. Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea will be provided. There is a limit of 15 participants. Training will commence at 10.00am and conclude by 4.00pm.

To enrol please contact Sadhona at SadhonaM@communityhousing.org.au

Sustainable Tenancies Toolkit

Jennifer will be leading participants through the Sustainable tenancies Toolkit and how it can be used. This is particularly useful for new starters who have heard about the resource and would like to find out more. Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea will be provided. There is a limit of 15 participants.

To enrol please contact Sadhona at SadhonaM@communityhousing.org.au

NCAT Training at a Reduced Price

NCAT Training will be run at the offices of CHIA NSW on Tuesday 23rd and Wednesday 24th July from 9.00am until 4.00pm for both days. The cost of the workshop will be $250. Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea will be provided. There is a limit of 15 participants.

To enrol please contact Sadhona at SadhonaM@communityhousing.org.au

In the Media

CHIA NSW Chair, John McKenna: Housing system is ‘monumentally messed up’ warns political party

CHIA NSW Chair, John McKenna: Strategy needed to address ‘chronic’ housing stress

Author of the DFV Toolkit Sue Cripps: Domestic violence victims to remain home, perpetrators given crisis housing in SA trial

 

Housing Matters- April 2019

The annual Anglicare Rental Affordability Snapshot has revealed an alarming picture of Australia’s private rental market, and the results for people on low incomes and income support are dire.
Contrary to what some commentators have been expressing the recent downturn in house prices, particularly in major metropolitan areas of NSW, has not led to an increase in the amount of affordable rental housing available.

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