You can use this draft to prepare a letter or email to your local member of parliament, Housing Minister Mander, Treasurer Nicolls and/or Premier Newman (here’s their addresses). To get a response, you need to include your name and contact address.
(Insert your name and address)
Name (Insert recipient’s details)
Dear local MP / Premier/ Treasurer / Minister for Housing and Public Works
RE: Funding for tenant advice services
I seek your immediate commitment to funding for the statewide network of local, independent tenant advice services and the Tenants’ Union of Queensland.
These services will cease operation by December 31 if your government does not announce funding in the near future. By committing as little as 15% of the interest generated annually on tenants’ bonds the entire network of services could be retained.
Tenant advice services fit well within the directions set out in the government’s Homelessness to Housing and Housing 2020 Strategies. The government’s aim is to house more people in the private market. Tenant advice service assist people to remain more safely and securely housed and reduce homelessness, working predominantly with private rental market households.
These services also fit well with the directions set out in the Queensland Commission of Audit – with government as the enabling outsourced services that are independent of government and cost efficient.
Tenant advice services offer unique and necessary assistance to tenants. The government’s Residential Tenancies Authority is not available locally, does not act on behalf of tenants who cannot do so themselves, and, unlike the tenant advice services, it is centrally located in Brisbane. Community Legal Centres, where it has been suggested tenants can go, have stated publicly that they cannot cope with the increased demand on their services.
Without these services tenants will be more vulnerable to becoming homeless and will have their access to justice limited.
I would like a response to my request for funding reinstatement as soon as possible.