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Reflections of a Blue Mountains Tenant Advocate

Jo Hibbert
Jo Hibbert, Tenant Advocate
Jo Hibbert has been a Tenant Advocate at the Blue Mountains Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Service for seven years. Now she’s retiring for a well-earned break, so we took the opportunity to ask her for some reflections about her time in the world of tenancy. She talks about some of her experiences at the Tribunal, and the way the workload for Advocates has increased, but the funding hasn't. She also tells the story of a tenant who she defended from eviction six times!
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17 years of advocacy in Regional NSW

Chris Maybin
Chris Maybin, Tenant Advocate
Chris Maybin has been a Tenant Advocate with VERTO South West Tenants’ Advice Service for 17 years. Now she's moving on, but in this interview she gives some of her thoughts and reflections on her experiences. She talks about having to tell a family they were going to be homeless, and being "cursed" by a landlord! She also explains some of the particular challenges faced by tenants and Tenant Advocates in regional New South Wales.
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Millers Point: through the looking glass

Jane Bennett Lower Fort Street
Robert Mowbray reflects on the forced relocation of public housing tenants from Millers Point. He collects a selection of posts that report and discuss on the events and issues.
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Public Housing Transfers

Public housing transfers
In October 2018, FACS Housing commenced their program of ‘whole of location’ transfers to Community Housing Providers with a group of just under one thousand tenancies in the Shoalhaven District transferred to Southern Cross Housing. These are the first of about 14,000 tenancies marked for whole-of-location management transfer over the coming year.
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The sale of Millers Point properties has ended: it has made inequality worse

Millers Point - not for sale photo
With the sale of the final two terrace houses on Saturday, 3 November 2018, Property NSW announced the end of the Millers Point sales program. Announcement of the successful tender for the sale of the Sirius building is expected any day now. We'll take this moment to reflect on a number of ways to remember this chapter.
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Tenant action groups

WPHAG tenants
The Tenants' Union supports the participation of tenants in decision-making that has an impact on the security, affordability and liveability of their housing. Here is a list of tenant groups of which we aware.
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Survey for Aboriginal Renters

Ngurampaa by Millmullian
The Tenants Union of NSW and the Aboriginal Tenancy Services are currently working on an Aboriginal Renting Policy Platform. This document will be used to strengthen the voices of Aboriginal people who rent regardless of who your landlord may be. We want to gather as many views from Aboriginal people as possible. If you an Aboriginal person who rents, please take a few minutes to complete the survey here.
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Tenant Advocates speak out against unfair evictions

Tenant Advocates at the Inner Sydney Tenants Advice and Advocacy Service
Inner Sydney Tenant Advocates
Following the NSW government’s recent decision not to abolish ‘no grounds’ evictions as part of upcoming rental reforms, Nicole Kennedy (Tenancy Coordinator at Inner Sydney Tenants Advice and Advocacy Service at Redfern Legal Centre) spoke to Eastside Radio 89.7 FM about how these laws impact tenants.
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David and Goliath: One tenant’s 14-year battle for repairs

David Bott
Public housing tenant David Bott
David Bott’s long-running battle in the Tribunal shone a light on a serious issue which public housing tenants know all too well: the systematic failure of FACS to do necessary repairs. After 14 years, FACS made the necessary repairs, but only after getting dangerously close to being found in contempt of the Tribunal. Thanks to David’s tenacity, his case has also paved the way for significant changes to the way FACS will deal with repairs issues.
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Tenancy rights for residents of group homes: consultation forums

Tenants' Union of NSW
The NSW Department of Family and Community Services, Ageing, Disability & Home Care is transferring the management of group homes to the non-government sector. As a result of this change, residents of transferred group homes will get a new landlord. Shelter NSW and the Tenants' Union of NSW are collaborating to deliver a number of targeted face-to-face forums in February 2018. It’s important that we hear from those within our community who will be directly affected by the transfer of supported group accommodation.
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