Re-commitment to fund housing infrastructure welcome, but NSW Government must act on the social housing waitlist of 57,000 families

Media release

09 February 2023

Community Housing Industry Association NSW has welcomed the State Government’s re-commitment to fund infrastructure but says investment in social housing is urgently needed to address the housing crisis.

“Unlocking land and building water and transport connections in regional NSW is absolutely needed,” said Mark Degotardi, CEO of CHIA NSW and spokesperson for the Confront the Crisis campaign.

“But without an urgent injection of funding to build more social and affordable housing, this commitment will barely scratch the surface of the social housing waitlist,” Mr Degotardi said.

“The social housing waitlist in NSW grew by 7,000 people in the last year alone. There are now 57,000 families and individuals in this so-called queue, and many of them will wait more than 10 years for a home.”

The announcement names several regions which have been allocated funding for infrastructure projects, including the Central West and Mid North Coast. Here is how the social housing waitlist has changed in those regions in just one year:

Area2021 waitlist2022 waitlistIncrease/decrease %
Dubbo44058933.9% increase
Bathurst28142450.9% increase
Orange26137644% increase
Foster/Tuncurry28535223.5% increase
Taree28337733.2% increase
Port Macquarie81992412.8% increase
Coffs Harbour78688612.7% increase
Kempsey25631322.3% increase

“There are more and more people joining the queue for social housing in these regions. That is why targeted funding for social and affordable housing is absolutely critical,” said Mr Degotardi. 

The Perrottet Government’s announcement today does not include new funding but is a re-announcement of funding that was included in last year’s State Budget.

“Let’s be clear; Premier Perrottet is re-packaging funding that was already announced in last year’s State Budget,” said Mr Degotardi.

“Re-announcing funding for infrastructure is not going to get our state out of this escalating housing crisis.”

“This week’s interest rate rise is only going to add fuel to the fire for people struggling to keep a roof over their head.”

“It’s time our leaders took this crisis seriously, and invested in the social and affordable housing our state desperately needs,” said Mr Degotardi.

Media Contact: Kayla Foster, 0447 040 029