40 peak bodies, unions, and community organisations urge government to extend eviction moratorium

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Health workers, homelessness services, unions, peak bodies and community organisations have united in an open letter to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Housing Minister Mick de Brenni, urging them to extend the moratorium on residential evictions.

Anglicare, Lifeline, The Services Union, DVConnect, The Salvation Army and the Public Health Association Australia are just some of the organisations that have joined the call.

The signatories to the letter note, “The Premier continues to remind us that there is a real risk of second and third waves of infection, that we cannot be complacent and that we must maintain our strong health response.

“Keeping people safe in their homes is an essential part of this health response.

“The decision not to extend the eviction moratorium has real consequences for Queenslanders who are watching their worst nightmares come true.”

Tenants Queensland CEO Penny Carr says, “We have spoken to countless tenants since the government announced they aren’t extending the eviction moratorium.

“Tenants are terrified of what will happen in a week’s time. A lot of them have already been told by their landlords or real estate agents that they will be kicked out.”

The open letter comes just as news breaks that every other state in Australia will extend their respective moratoriums.

Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) CEO Aimee McVeigh says Queensland is now the only state in Australia not to extend the eviction moratorium.

“Every other Premier – be it the NSW Liberal Premier Gladys Berejiklian or Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan – has recognised the crucial need to extend the moratorium,” she said.

“This is not a political issue, it’s about keeping people safe and providing certainty for industry and the economy.

“Why should the 34 per cent of Queenslanders who rent have less protections during this crisis than their counterparts in other parts of the country? Frontline services know how disastrous this decision will be.

“We are continuing to live through a crisis and all other Australian states have recognised this by extending their moratoriums.

“Everyone has a right to safe, secure and stable housing. This is not the time to pull the rug out from under the feet of Queensland’s renters.

“The Premier has listened to the advice of experts throughout the COVID crisis, and the low number of COVID cases attests to the success of this strategy.

“There is still time to reverse this dangerous decision and listen to the experts on the ground who are telling the state government that removing the eviction moratorium will be disastrous.”

__________________________

See the open letter here.

Signatories (in alphabetical order):

  1. 3rd Space
  2. Anglicare North Queensland
  3. Anglicare Southern Queensland
  4. ATSILS Qld
  5. Barry Sheehan Psychology Pty Ltd
  6. Basic Rights Qld
  7. Caloundra Community Centre
  8. Capricorn Community Development Association
  9. Caxton Legal Centre
  10. Community Legal Centres Queensland
  11. CREATE Foundation
  12. DVConnect
  13. Fotina Hardy Consulting
  14. Hinchinbrook Community Support Centre Inc
  15. Jacaranda Housing
  16. Kurbingui
  17. Lifeline Darling Downs & South West Queensland Ltd.
  18. Logan East Community Neighbourhood Association Inc
  19. Marlin Coast Neighbourhood Centre
  20. Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA)
  21. Micah Projects
  22. Mount Isa Family Support Service and Neighbourhood Centre Inc.
  23. National Tertiary Education Union – Queensland division
  24. Power Learning Pty Ltd
  25. Queensland Alliance for Mental Health
  26. Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS)
  27. Queensland Youth Housing Coalition
  28. Queenslanders with Disability Network Ltd
  29. Relationships Australia
  30. Roseberry
  31. Salvation Army
  32. SANDBAG Inc.
  33. Shelter Housing Actions Cairns Inc
  34. Tenants Queensland
  35. The Services Union
  36. Townsville Multicultural Support Group Inc
  37. World Wellness Group Ltd
  38. Young People Ahead Youth and Community Services Inc.
  39. Youth Affairs Network Queensland
  40. Zig Zag Young Women’s Resource Centre Inc
24 September 2020