8th Mar 2016
A lack of affordable accommodation has Pensioners living in cars

A new British movie featuring Maggie Smith has been released by homeless support services to highlight the injustice of people living in cars. The film The Lady in the Van focuses on the true story of Mary Shepherd who lived in a van for 15 years during the 1970 and 80s in England.

The situation of a person living in a van or car is not uncommon in Australia, but there are growing concerns that a decrease in affordable accommodation and a growing public housing waitlist will see more people resorting to living in their vehicles.

In an interview with The Age yesterday, 67 year old pensioner Stan Hawrylak described the dangers he faces everyday living in his Holden sedan. Recent occurrences are; attempted muggings, semi-trailers almost running over his car and 3am wake up knocks on the window from the police looking to take down his name.

Stan is content with his lifestyle. While he admits a simple flat with a bedroom and toilet would be more comfortable, there are people doing it far worse than he is. Spending his days reading in libraries, the former meatworker is happy to have a roof over his head at night so that he doesn’t feel the cold.

Council to Homeless Persons CEO Jenny Smith suggests Stan’s situation is not an isolated case. "We hear of hundreds of cases each year of people being forced to sleep in their cars because they simply have nowhere else to go. Often older single people end up couch surfing, in their car, or in potentially dangerous illegal rooming houses, while they wait for secure housing, which can be months to years. Investment in safe housing that is affordable for singles is an urgent priority." she said.

Wintringham Specialist Aged Care communications manager Julia Mazur noted a particular rise in the risk of homelessness among older women. "We've noticed women in their 60s is a group that's on the rise of being at risk of homelessness. They're in unaffordable rent, their rent falls into arrears [and] suddenly they are one step away from being evicted." She said.

Read more from www.theage.com.au

Opinion: A roof and bed for every Australian

There are four core necessities that any Australian should have if they are in need - food, water, shelter and clothing. Stan considers himself lucky because, by living in a car, he has a roof over his head every night – and that is very much the truth.

All around Australia there are people worse off than Stan, without a roof over their head, forced to brave the cold of night and the dangers that come with sleeping out in the open.

Neither situation is acceptable nor what is best for Australia. The growing public housing list of over 32,000+ is proof that more effort needs to be made to provide affordable housing for those most in need. A roof over their head, running water and a bed to sleep in should be the basics afforded to every Australian.

What do you think? Have you heard of anyone you know resorting to living in their car? Should there be a focus on building more public housing, and if so, how would you fund it? Would you be happy to have someone like Maggie Smith’s character in The Lady in the Van sleeping in your driveway?





    COMMENTS

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    phantom
    8th Mar 2016
    10:25am
    No one wants to rent a house out to "Dolies" or people getting rent assistant if they don't look after the place. Housing is costing us a fortune just for maintenance because these people destroy the current stock and want more. Investors will not rent to the unemployed for that reason. "Dolies" or the like should have to pay a bond taken out of their pay each fortnight. They should have regular inspections with the intent of making them look after the residence, then their might be more houses available. We are in a time of "its my right" with no responsibility. It has to stop.
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    10:46am
    Why bother when the Department of Housing just gives you another one? Talk is tough but it is known on the street that it really does not matter what you do to public property.
    Your post is quite factual. This happens in private rentals too. People who mistreat other people's property should not be protected by legislation and deserve to live in a tent. Maybe one day the system will change.
    Anonymous
    8th Mar 2016
    11:38am
    I think it's offensive and cruel to refer to ''dolies'' in this way. Many of the unemployed are responsible, careful, honest tenants, and many employed people - including some on high incomes - trash rental properties.

    Conversely, many landlords take unfair advantage of those on very low incomes, including the unemployed, by not keeping premises up to standard and not complying with laws intended to protect tenants. It's a two-way street.

    There is absolutely no reason to connect unemployment with vandalising rental accommodation.

    I do agree that the legislation often wrongly favours tenants who do the wrong thing, and I support any appeal to have that changed. But don't slander innocent people who are doing in tough to make your point.
    Pablo
    8th Mar 2016
    2:49pm
    I agree with you Phantom. On more than one occasion I have had my rental properties misused and abused by people on the dole and single parent pensioners in particular. They were always behind in their rent and left the place in an absolute mess. The Residential Tenancies Tribunal was totally useless, as most government agencies are.

    Now I refuse to take any of these people into my properties and am willing to forego rent while I wait for a suitable tenant. I will never rent to anyone in these categories.

    And don't talk to me about legislative support for landlords! There is NONE! Tenants have everything handed to them on a platter.
    Radish
    8th Mar 2016
    4:54pm
    I have never and would never own a property to rent out. I do not need the aggro. Better to buy shares or have some other investment; at least you do not have the hassle some property owners have had.
    JoMojo
    8th Mar 2016
    5:12pm
    Dolies never heard of it before. Disgraceful it could so easily be you. Some charities do it right i.e. single units a kitchen lounge bed in one room with a bathroom separate. Nice garden surrounds with garden beds and vegies with a shed. Others all around so damaging their home would be stopped pronto. Or a person from said charity overseeing each 20 units/tenants. Cost per unit is around $100,000. In other countries they provide and do up shipping containers around $35,000 ea.

    As for those with partners and/or children wrecking homes - they are the mentally ill. They need mental help people around in their settings not let loose in suburbia. I'd like to see less children down to two children only then study/work.

    Sadly many miss out because of comments like above - many just not so.
    particolor
    21st Mar 2016
    9:30pm
    I'm surprized they have told Her to sell that expensive car and Downsize to Cheaper Model ? :-)
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    10:26am
    Streuf. I thought the pic was Paul Hogan's father.
    I have seen a few people living in cars. Sad.
    In Denver, USA, there is a whole community which has resorted to living in tents around the city outskirts because there people were thrown out of work and many lost their homes during the GFC. The council is now trying to move them on because they are unsightly.
    Hope it never comes to Oz. And the government trolls sling their mud at Kevin Rudd and Co. for having not allowed this to happen in Oz? Well they would. We might not like the debt we have but (so far) we do not have the bad bad problems still incumbent in the US. Hope we never do. Time will tell.
    dawny
    8th Mar 2016
    11:02am
    community housing take rent assistance from people renting their houses the government made it a law that it was to go towards new public housing that was a few years ago and as yet no new housing have been provided up this way
    KSS
    8th Mar 2016
    12:31pm
    Mick you obviously spend more time overseas than in Australia. If you bothered to look around you would see that 'tent cities' have already arrived in Australia. Near Central Station in Sydney for example there is a small park that now has well over 50 such people and it growing. So much so the Council employs security guards to keep the peace there at night.
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    1:30pm
    There are numbers...and then there are numbers. Australia is not exempt but it's hard to fathom that the richest country on the planet has so many of its disposable citizens living in squalor. Such are the whims of the rich who do not care!
    Pablo
    8th Mar 2016
    5:52pm
    Mick, you need to come up to Townsville and go down to a place called Reid Park on the edge of the city any night of the week. Here you'll see the real dregs of our society drinking themselves silly every night, taking drugs, fornicating in full view of anyone walking past, urinating in full sight of anyone, and creating a huge hullabaloo to keep nearby residents awake at night time.

    The US problem is already here and getting worse by the day.
    Anonymous
    8th Mar 2016
    6:48pm
    There are approximately 18.5 million abandoned homes (houses) in the U.S.A.
    mogo51
    8th Mar 2016
    11:08am
    It is a disgrace that pensioners have to resort to this. Maybe they can give the pensioners the addresses of retired politicians and they can move in with them, to help them spend theri $150k pensions.
    buby
    9th Mar 2016
    12:05pm
    or sleep on their couch, or park in their driveway.
    'but all they are interested in doing now is letting private owners build large blocks, like our old housing commission in melbourne city, cause they can't be bothered with it all. And these large apartments are rising up everywhere. they couldn't do it before, but now they are allowing it. Squeezing everybody into the city as much as they can, and for that you have to pay big bucks :( NOT impressed really) More pollution, and they call that progress
    particolor
    13th Jul 2017
    7:45pm
    Well I'm not moving into one of their HIGH-RISES Look what the Golly Wogs did in London :-( :-( BBQ Fans :-( :-(
    Adrianus
    13th Jul 2017
    9:52pm
    Just call in the tin men to do a declad.
    tisme
    8th Mar 2016
    11:19am
    with so many aussies living on the streets already ( the forgotten refugees) and so many more to come who is proud to be aussie ?? not me
    buby
    9th Mar 2016
    12:06pm
    NO nor me either tisme, as many where i live, i have seen the elderly parked in car parks, coping like this. ITs shameful
    bebby
    8th Mar 2016
    11:24am
    This will probably be labelled 'Racist', however the aim is for needy Australians needing low cost accommodation. I live in an outer suburb in Melbourne and when passing two Government Housing buildings have yet to see any other people except obvious new arrivals exiting. It is time to house our own before increasing migrant intake, and not everyone needing accommodation is a Dolie.
    Aussie
    8th Mar 2016
    2:29pm
    No mate you are not a racist you are correct I am a foreign person arrive in Australia in 1969 work very very hard make 3 beautiful kids to contribute the was very different then ..... Today they come in an a boat and get more that we pensioners get Free home, Money medical shit shit a lot more that us Why all this inequality because they are refugees and suffer on their countries ..... yes they suffer ok but give them all that for a period of time force them to work, control the intake numbers.
    I agreed to provide assistance to refugees but hey hey I know a family has been in Australia 10 years on welfare no work ....Mother Father 3 kids ...... free home etc .....Well mate you are not a racist you looking for a balance same as me.
    missmarple
    8th Mar 2016
    3:54pm
    I totally agree with you Aussie, the SO CALLED REFUGEE"S get everything handed to them while our seniors struggle big time, and bebby I have seen Government Houses empty and remained empty while so so many family's are desperate for some where to live, in a Melbourne suburb a school was closed down and kids had to travel to other schools so the grounds could be turned into housing units for the SO CALLED REFUGEE"S,,,, its all soooo wrong
    JoMojo
    8th Mar 2016
    5:16pm
    We must look after our own first and this does include many from overseas now. STOP ALL immigrants until jobs + housing catch up.
    Pablo
    8th Mar 2016
    5:58pm
    Totally agree. While our aged pensioners are living on the streets in poverty, we are bringing in all these illegal, country-shopping economic migrants who have tried to jump the queue of REAL refugees, and they are going to be given accommodation, jobs, and welfare payments. Where is the equality in that!?

    We need to look after our own people first before wasting our welfare dollars on these illegal migrants!
    particolor
    8th Mar 2016
    8:18pm
    Tick of Approval bebby !
    BElle
    8th Mar 2016
    11:24am
    Having seen the film "The Lady In The Van", I think it missed the most important point of this story. At the very end of the film you come to appreciate that this was not a "hopeless case", this was a woman who, under different opportunities, was a "lady" in all senses of the word. It, unfortunately did not convey the empathy for the Lady that the story should have evoked.
    More importantly we need to see that these people, men and women, are often in these distressed circumstances through no fault of their doing. Once they are on the downward slope it is almost impossible for these people to get back on their feet. We need more understanding and tolerance for these people. It could just as easily be you.

    Dear Phantom. We had a house in a country town that we rented out. We found that people on the "dole" were more reliable and less trouble than many of the others we rented to. Garnisheeing their dole money ensures that their rent is paid. They are often so appreciative of a roof over their heads they create no hassles.
    Happy cyclist
    8th Mar 2016
    11:26am
    I see an older man who lives in an old van most mornings on my bike ride to work. I always call out hello and he waves but he doesn't encourage any interaction. Apparently he has lived in the van for at least 20 years so wasn't so old when he started. I always feel for him during our extremely cold winter mornings. I don't know how he doesn't freeze. I was absolutely gobbsmacked one day when I cycled past with a friend who said very nastily that he "shouldn't be allowed to live in that van, after all, the rest of us all have to pay rates so why shouldn't he"! How cruel some people are. No consideration at all as to why he might be living that way. I have never been able to look at the "friend" the same way since.
    wally
    8th Mar 2016
    11:31am
    That's why I have a station wagon!
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    12:13pm
    Trade in on a hearse Wal.
    particolor
    14th Jul 2017
    7:22pm
    What's that ?? The BOX Trifecta !! :-)
    Home..
    Wheels ..
    And No Rent !! :-) :-)
    kev888
    8th Mar 2016
    11:32am
    Phantom It is obvious you dont get out much and take the media as truth. Not all pensioners are ungrateful for govt accommodation, most look after there property. When is time right in your mind? People are sleeping on the street with little or no help . When was the last time you donated $5 to charity? Pensioners are entitled to govt assistance , most have paid hefty taxes all there working life its not welfare its an entitlement. Mick your your comments smack of ignorance .
    Gunner
    8th Mar 2016
    11:39am
    I have the feeling if you look really hard you will open up a whole new community of car/van dwellers across Australia. The problem is what to do about it. Points are made about public housing waiting lists, affordability, the lack of suitable housing etc. It really is time to start looking after our own homeless elderly people. After all isn't that just one small piece of Government (all levels) responsibility for the better good of the Nations people?
    particolor
    8th Mar 2016
    8:37pm
    This IS Racist or whatever you call Religionist ! How many of those New Arrivals do you see on the End of a 6 Year Waiting List ? NONE :-( :-(

    8th Mar 2016
    11:51am
    A very long time ago, my partner and I were both unemployed. We rented a very inexpensive half-house that was in rather bad repair when we moved in. We sugar-soaped the walls, begged a pot of paint and brush from the landlord and painted the kitchen cupboards and all the architraves and window trims, shampooed the carpets, scrubbed and polished the linoleum, scrubbed the shower and bleached grout between tiles, scrubbed and bleached the toilet, took the oven apart and soaked all the parts in caustic soda then scrubbed and reassembled, scrubbed the outside concrete, cleaned up the lawns and gardens, and made inexpensive cotton curtains to replace the tattered old rags that hung over windows. When we left there, the landlord gave us two weeks' free rent and several items of furniture as a thank you, saying he could rent the property for a 10% higher price thanks to our efforts.

    Phantom, your disgusting judgmental comments are an insult to good people who, like us, do it tough at times through no fault of their own. Many of them are responsible, honest, decent, clean and diligent in caring for property - and very appreciative of any landlord who treats them with respect. Frankly, I suspect any ''dolies'' who rent from you would have little concern for your property, given the arrogance and contempt you show for them.

    And Mick, you are full of it! Getting public housing is NOT easy. There will always be a small minority who do the wrong thing and give others a bad name, but a great many public housing tenants are deeply grateful for the help they are afforded and look after their property extremely well. Many even eventually buy the property from the public housing authority.
    KSS
    8th Mar 2016
    12:28pm
    "Many even eventually buy the property from the public housing authority". And that is part of the problem Rainey. Whilst the councils say they will build more public housing with the proceeds of the sales, they don't; so the housing stock goes down each time one is sold to the incumbent thus depriving someone else of the help they need.
    Rae
    8th Mar 2016
    3:53pm
    Yes Rainey my husband and I were also students starting out and rented a very run down property that we revitalised. I am now a landlord and find if the rental is near a station close to the CBD with low range rent and kept in good condition I have no trouble whether I rent to students, unemployed or low income earners.

    I employ a brilliant property manager who knows any maintenance will be promptly okayed. So do the tenants.

    I do think the government needs to supply cabins that have a property manager living onsite similar to council holiday parks.

    There are also many halls available where homeless could be accommodated with a suitable person employed to ensure safety.

    Sometimes all people need is a safe base to begin again from and I do believe it time to put rescue options into place before the problem escalates further and becomes more difficult to fix.
    buby
    9th Mar 2016
    12:25pm
    indeed rainey, when i went to rent a two bedroom in the west of melbourne. It was in bad condition but i was desperate so i took it.
    It had ducted heating, i asked the Real Estate agent has it been cleaned....NO real answer. OH yeh sure it should be okay, was what i got. I had moved in mid summer. then winter came. I ran the ducted heating, and thought i might go for a walk then come back if little dust was in there it be gone by the time i came back. NO when i came back IT was Loaded. the WHOLE Unit, had a gray mass right through it. I nearly choked as i rushed for the OFF switch, and then OPENed up all doors and windows. then had to sleep in my car for the rest of the night. I nearly froze to death, as i had not prepared for it.
    then for the next 6months i developed lung problems, neamonia set in, i got really sick, i had to through away most of my clothes, as i couldn't clean the bugs out of them. I was so upset and sick. Eventually i was able to get onto an inspector, who just spoke to me over the phone, and asked if he really needed to come out to do an inspection. and i think because i was on a bus when he rang he did not hear me clearly and he didn't come. I was left wondering what happened. And because i've been a home owner, and never had to endure such happenings. I let it slide.
    but towards the end of my tenure. After 3yrs in that place many thing happened. and i got my act together, and sorted out that rotten landlord so much that he sold the property, while the whole process was being run through the courts. And the next landlord, couldn't figure out why he was not being paid my rent. Cause i also got a new agent who wasn't told about anything either. But i was paying my rent to the courts which i had to do until everything was fixed. Eventually everything sorted, but i just couldn't stay there. Enough was enough. The best years of my life wasted, and i only got sick, so sick i could barely survive...... NO wonder ppl go to live in cars. I did often. It was the only way i could cope at times. I paid rent for nothing really.

    8th Mar 2016
    12:01pm
    If I were down and out, I'd look for a cheap caravan to live in. They can be picked up quite inexpensively. But it does worry me that councils are closing down caravan parks and banning permanent residency, and making it much tougher for people to find somewhere to live in a caravan or motorhome.

    Go out on the road and you will see lots of ''grey nomads'' who are happily living permanently in caravans and motor homes. They love it. But they are challenged in finding places to park because of councils shutting down free camps and banning roadside camping.

    If there was less obsession with pandying to the profit motive and more genuine respect for the fact that people have different ideals and preferences and make differing lifestyle choices, we would all get on a lot better. Also, we need more respect for the underprivileged and financially challenged, and an end to the vile bigotry reflected in inaccurate comments about ''dolies''.

    That said, in Australia it's hard to conceive that we could have a lot of homeless people. Our social welfare payments are adequate to enable almost anyone to pay for very modest accommodation in a country town. A difficulty, of course, arises when someone is out of a job in the city. Moving to a country town is seen as moving deliberately away from job opportunities, and may result in loss of benefits. Maybe we need more flexibility and understanding in dealing with the unemployed in these circumstances?
    HarrysOpinion
    8th Mar 2016
    2:44pm
    The unemployment rates in regional cities is higher then the average stated by the government. In my region the unemployment rate is 12%. Good for retirees because housing rentals are around $160 per week for a 2 bdrm home. If you are fortunate to buy outright then prices range from $150,000 for 2 bedroom village style ground level strata units. People just need to think outside the box and do a lot of well considered research. Of course, where regional unemployment is high it is much harder for the younger people with lack of job opportunities. It's a major problem that the local government , state and federal are, if not ignoring it, not doing much about. I agree with you Rainey, the government needs to be more flexible and understanding in dealing with the unemployed. Local governments are sitting on billions of dollars in reserves that could be used to create employment for young people. If Local governments don't want create employment then take away their 'Charity - not for profit organisation' status and let them pay full state and federal tax and all the associated levies.
    Supernan
    8th Mar 2016
    12:01pm
    What a mixture of comments & opinions. From our experience doing Tax Returns, most of the tenants who wreck house are drunk or drugged. It does not matter if they are on the dole, working or retired - if they are addicted, they make poor tenants. Regular checking is essential ! So dont buy a rental you cant keep an eye on yourself !

    Most Landlords take out Landlords Insurance. The fact that Insurance Companies offer this Insurance readily show it is only a minority who damage houses.

    Lots of Gov homes stand empty for a long time waiting for repairs & get worse standing empty. Saw programme in UK where they either: let tenants live free if they agree to paint & repair it within a set time & then rent it. Or in badly damaged places, let Landlords have the house for free on the basis that repairs are carried out to standard, within a set time & are only rented to low income renters on Gov Housing waiting lists.

    There are always solutions but someone has to care enough to put them in place.
    HarrysOpinion
    8th Mar 2016
    2:16pm
    Supernan, unless landlords do their own thorough checking of potential housing rental applicants instead leaving it to R/E Property rental managers, you will always get the alcoholics, drug addicts, thugs and mentally sick nightmare tenants who will destroy the landlord's property.The property managers are only interested in earning their commission. They are not interested who the renter is. On the other side of the coin, there are a lot of landlords who do not attend to repairs of their rental properties when such repairs are requested and allow the state of their rental properties to deteriorate.
    kev888
    8th Mar 2016
    12:05pm
    To Those that don't get out much Take note Rainy's comments are worth noting A true account of contemporary urban Australia .
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:20pm
    Yes good to see someone telling the Truth ! :-)
    jpalin
    8th Mar 2016
    12:06pm
    Why don't the Government look after their own people instead of bringing refugees into the country!
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    12:15pm
    Because the media like the 'refugee' beat up and give pollies a much bigger slap on the back than for domestic Australians.
    Happy cyclist
    8th Mar 2016
    12:29pm
    Refugees want to work and pay taxes and, given the chance, that is exactly what most of them do. They are not a burden on the tax payer, they are no different from the Greeks, Italians, Vietnamese etc who have come to this country over the decades and quickly become hard-working tax-paying citizens. However, if we insist on giving them mental illness by housing them in horrid circumstances on Manus Island etc before allowing them to settle, then maybe they will not be able to work and pay taxes. Stop blaming refugees for our social problems. Refugees or immigrants have always been keen to work and contribute. Whether or not we allow them to do so is the point.
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    12:48pm
    Some do but I understand that statistics show a different story of many refugees on lifetime government benefits.
    As always some people make a go of it. They are to be admired.
    Anonymous
    8th Mar 2016
    5:54pm
    Happy cyclist, that's not actually true at all. Even looking at the skilled migration program, which should be most likely to bring in workers who will pay taxes, only 68% have full time jobs and only 32% of the spouses and working age children who accompany them are in work years after arrival. Unemployment among skilled migrants and their families is 30% higher than for Australia as a whole.

    Unemployment among migrants from non-English-speaking backgrounds is estimated to be 20%.

    Sadly, many 'refugees' (if they really are that) DO NOT come here to work. They come here for the ridiculous benefits handed out. There are statistics evidencing that many refuse to try to learn English, despite the government spending millions giving them the opportunity.

    As for their housing, it's a hell of a lot better than many Australians had! And immigrants of past generations can tell you about the appalling conditions FOR WHICH THEY WERE GRATEFUL because they GENUINELY came from worse, and came wanting to work and make better lives for themselves. I'd like to see immigrants and refugees treated better, but first lets look after our own please. Charity begins at home. There are millions of Australians out there doing it very tough, and lots of them desperately want to work. Lots of them lived in terrible conditions as kids or during tough periods in their lives too. Some have genuine mental illness as a result. But most of them just get on with working and trying to make their lives better, and don't rant and rave as if the world owes them a living.
    HKW
    8th Mar 2016
    12:23pm
    Australia such a rich country; what a shame!
    Having no heart for elderly people living in cars; the puppets in Australian so-called government are heartless, have no compassion and do not deserve its people paying them huge salaries and huge pensions just for following the orders of lobbyist and the "shadow government". SHAME ON YOU !!!
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    12:50pm
    Big business owns the game and Australians need to wake up when they get to the ballot box. I for one am sick and tired of the puppets masquerading as politicians who do little more than rubber stamp policies which benefit them.
    KSS
    8th Mar 2016
    1:07pm
    According to the most up to date statistics (2011) there are over 105,000 people deemed homeless in Australia. 25% are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and 30% were born overseas. The biggest age groups are the 25-34 year olds (18%) followed by the under 12s at 17%. The over 55s make up about 14%. The 12-24s account for 25%. In all of this only 6% of all homeless are actually sleeping 'rough' in tents or in the open. The rest are in a range of other types of accommodation such as sheltered housing, boarding houses, with other households temporarily (e.g. 'couch surfing') or other temporary accommodation.

    The statistics do not give reasons for the homelessness and undoubtedly there are those that choose to be so (think the kids who refuse to comply with their parents 'rules' so take off aided and abetted by Centrelink). The point is that this is not an issue for one group over another. Nor should the different age groups have to compete as to who has it tougher.

    Public Housing should be just that, in public hands. It should not be sold off, it should not be considered permanent. It should be recognised for what it is, a safe place to get back on your feet and be able to move on. Public Housing should not be able to be bequeathed to family members and a single (or couple) older person should not be allowed to continue to live in say a three bedroom house when there are families in equal or more need of it. Those singles (or couples) should be moved somewhere smaller and more appropriate. It is PUBLIC HOUSING and they have no rights to it based on longevity of tenure.
    MICK
    8th Mar 2016
    1:33pm
    I don't usually agree with right wing activists but you seem to be on the money here. I concur!
    Old Sailor Bushie
    8th Mar 2016
    1:32pm
    Australians need to be able to comprehend, rather than just read, the "writing on the wall". I did my primary education in the propaganda-saturated environment of Peron's Argentina. The country was blindsided by Fascism, and to this day, remains an economic and political mess.
    One way to see what has happened, and goes-on happening in Australia, is the inexorable 'bending' of the way in which the Nations institutions are defined to the public; and the resultant changes in how they are allowed to deteriorate, become dysfunctional; and finally, be wholly presented as being of no social or economic value -- or a needless burden -- and discarded without engendering any political outcry. A prime example _is_ the Old-Age Pension, which; when it was launched in 1908, was _never_ intended as a mere 'safety-net'. It was to be a reward for good --contributory-- citizenship. That _any_ figure in Public Life --let alone a Parliamentarian !-- is allowed to get away with a description of it as "an Unfair, and Unsustainable Burden on Taxpayers " without it being pointed-out that he (or she) is therefore proclaiming that they are thus, the heir to many Governments' worth of maladministration resulting in the running-down of the National Interest they're elected to defend. through allowing a disastrous deterioration of the Tax-System over a long period of incompetent neglect. Purging the system of the current incompetent Politocracy is becoming an increasingly urgent matter. We must stop electing such people -whichever Party puts them up as candidates-- and engage some talent, or risk becoming a Fascist, Corporate playground. Yes: we're bigger than Nicaragua -- but they only had United Fruit Co. to contend with in the 1920's & 30's. Here, we're a much bigger prize; and just about every foreign transnational of any consequence wants an 'in'. And our spoiled political children are showing themselves ever more readily swayed by 'sucker-bait' (eg: the TPP !) Pensioners living in cars ? -- You ain't seen nuttin ! (Yet).
    in2sunset
    8th Mar 2016
    1:42pm
    Exactly that - for every AUSTRALIAN. NOT economic refugees and border hoppers.
    julias
    8th Mar 2016
    1:50pm
    I am currently renting a unit, which is to be put up for sale. If the buyer is an investor, I have the chance of staying here, near my family. If the rent is increased, however, I will have to look elsewhere because I am otherwise unable to afford rents in my family's area. I am an aged pensioner, I turn 70 next month. I have my name down for Public Housing but have been told it can take 15 to 20 years to get a place, if you are lucky! What we need is for landlords to realise that older people are not out to destroy their houses. All we want is a place to call home that is affordable. They need to stop focusing on the money and become a bit more humanistic. My son and his partner have said that if I get "stuck" I can move in with them for a while. While I appreciate the offer, I choose to keep my independence as long as I possibly can. If I have to move to another area to get cheaper rent, I will.
    HarrysOpinion
    8th Mar 2016
    1:56pm
    I wonder if homeless Australians like that can claim asylum-refugee status in their own country so they can get the same priority housing benefits that refugees get in Australia?
    MD
    8th Mar 2016
    2:05pm
    To coin one of Bob Hawkes' former tag lines - " Errr, just let me say this".
    Politicians and/or their Departmental 'perk servants' are not entirely responsible for every social ill or ailment that besets anyone, every group or demographic.
    People, individuals are largely responsible for their own actions and lot in life, we fit into the social framework as determined by many influences but principally it is the law of the land that prevails. Social mores and 'group think' oftimes apply to whatever faction, religion, club or gang a person associates with.
    A good many folk choose to live a carefree lifestyle, formerly identified as swaggies the current crop may well be the grey nomads, although in most of these cases they also own propert(y)/ies. There is no doubt that we have a number of older folk living in cars and equally no doubt that the numbers may well be on the increase. If these folk fail to approach the relevant Govt department or any one of countless charitable organizations to seek help in alleviating their lot then how can we expect the pollies and their ilk to be cognizant of every single soul 'doing it hard'.
    This subject matter is not a cut and dried issue for every Tom,Dick,or Harry ( no gender bias meant)as so many variables can determine who gets public housing regardless of the applicants' claim for entitlement.
    Experience some years ago, when contracted to a public housing authority, enlightened me somewhat to the mix of tenants. The various requests, demands, beseeching, threats of a few that were counter to the respective 'order' for the given property was mind boggling. Far too many 2/3 bed houses were occupied by lil old ladies or single men.
    Individuals in retirement, (willingly or unwittingly) relying on public housing need first and foremost to accept that as circumstances change the demand for said housing increases and maybe considerations require a rethink, ie, time to move into a flat/unit, thus releasing the 2/3 bed for a needy family. How often I've seen events on TV in PH estates that since confirm this. Now try and move said folk to another area & smaller dwelling and before all the bleeding hearts jump down my throat
    Anonymous
    9th Mar 2016
    7:33am
    Such a simplistic view from someone who obviously has no comprehension, let alone experience, of real hardship and the response of society to it. Trust me, MD, it's not the victims of society's mess who are responsible for the problems. No, politicians etc. are not responsible for EVERY social ill or ailment, but they ARE responsible for the fact that a significant number in society never get a break... and the struggle eventually breaks them.

    If only it were as simple as it is in your wild dreams!
    Torch
    8th Mar 2016
    2:09pm
    My comments won't be well received but here goes . I've known countless oldies who never gave a thought to their futures when they had the chance years ago . Smoking, drinking ,the pokies dominated their lifestyles . I used to plead with them to rethink their situation . Now they exist in poverty and it is not the tax payers fault or responsibility to bail them out .I also don't believe in public housing of any kind . It simply creates a class of citizens who never have to do as the rest of society do to sort out their own accommodation . Those in public housing stay there for life subsidised by others . Reap what you sew .And for a solution for the many not in the know , scattered all over Australia there are licensed private accommodation homes for over 55 where all you do is pay 80% of your pension and you get a modern home unit and all meals provided . Only a few years ago my wife managed one of these facilities in Moe Victoria . They had 45 units and only 8 of them occupied . It was a beautiful facility with gardens , functions , all food , the lot . About 4 similar facilities within a 10 k radius . None were full . Extensive advertising made no difference . We just couldn't get the people in .Most people who live on the streets or in cars do so by choice for what ever their own reasons are .This topic is a political hot potato and is full of misinformation .
    East of Toowoomba
    8th Mar 2016
    4:02pm
    Hi Torch, just a quick question, what does 80% of a single pension come to and how much is left over?

    Can a person still afford to pay for the other expenses needed to live a normal life, such as vehicle registration and insurance, fuel and car maintenance, gas, phone and electricity, health insurance, going out money and gifts for grandchildren etc, on the 20% remaining of their pension? I am not a pensioner but wondering if a typical pensioner would actually spend 80% of their pension on rent and food?

    My mum lived in a small rented house when she was alive and I don't think her rent and food for herself and two dogs consumed that much of her pension, but I could be wrong.
    MD
    8th Mar 2016
    2:14pm
    Apologies for the interruption.
    Any number of arguments can/will be put to justify why they should not be 'hard pressed' into acceptance of a downsize.
    Just what does it currently take to satisfy each and every individual of their respective 'needs, demands, requirements, entitlements or rights'. I'm sure no-one but no-one, including the poor overpaid pollies would or could venture a wild guess on this.
    In the words of the (former) outspoken shock Jock - Laws was known to say, "keep the dream alive".
    Radish
    8th Mar 2016
    2:32pm
    There is no answer to this problem. No matter what is done it will not fix the situation I feel....too many different scenarios, people on drugs, alcoholics, people who have not bothered about their future,unemployment, pensioners who cannot afford to pay the high rents in Sydney, lack of suitable housing, people with mental issues, and the list goes on and on ...
    Aussie
    8th Mar 2016
    2:19pm
    Well I have to agreed I have seen a lot of destruction of public housing. I have a friend that live in a public house and the daily problems that he has with the neighbours is incredible (Drugs, Crazy people lots of Young people with problems etc etc I do not have to tell you this you already know....) .... he has no choice no income only pension he is a tradesman well qualify and good worker but can not get a job ....Why ??? BECAUSE IS TO OLD IS TOLD EVERY TIME WITH DIFFERENT WORDS like over qualify sorry not enough experience for the job etc etc....... What a Bull he is only 69 he has been without a job for nearly 9 years he only get some small casual jobs .....

    That is why I left Australia ..... my beautiful country force me to go because I am not prepare to sleep on my car and have showers somewhere on a club .....is not a life. With pension I could not afford to continue paying 350 x week for a place to live decently

    What to do ???? Just find another country that make my living a decent day ...
    Good luck
    World Prophet
    8th Mar 2016
    2:43pm
    Look, it doesn't matter who the people are that are given an opportunity at taking up public hosing. Just as recipients of benefits have an obligation to the tax payers who provide the means for the government to pay the benefit to use it prudently (e.g. feed themselves and their kids, not spend it on booze, gambling or drugs), so the recipients of public housing have an obligation to look after the property in the best way possible. Keep it clean and tidy, don't cause any damage. The ones who do not look after the property should be promptly evicted, just as those on benefits who misuse it should lose it. It is only fair that our society takes care of those who have problems, be it through not being able to find work, being sick or (genuinely) disabled or finding themselves without the means to afford housing. But there should always be a 'hand up' rather than a 'hand out' attitude on the part of both 'us' and 'them'. It isn't a shame to be genuinely unemployed or ill or otherwise temporarily or permanently unable to make ends meet, but there HAS to be an attitude of mutual obligation on both sides. If people abuse the system, kick them off it, and conversely if people try to give those who need a helping hand a hard time, read them the riot act. We're all paddling the same canoe, folks, so lets do it properly. Am I being realistic? Probably not. There will always be scammers and there will always be snobs. But, hey, I can dream, can't I?
    Katie
    8th Mar 2016
    3:30pm
    Of course there should be more public housing but I am at a loss as to how it would be funded. I am fortunate enough to have a lovely small cottage in a group of houses especially provided by Public Housing for aged or underprivileged people. We are very well looked after and are able to help one another if the need arises. It's a shame that more can't be done for those in need.
    Rae
    8th Mar 2016
    4:14pm
    AS for funding maybe a little bit of the billions paid for our taxpayer built public assets being flogged off on a regular basis could be used.

    Instead of selling off the parks the governments could keep a few and put cabins on them and hire a couple of caretakers.
    Sundays
    8th Mar 2016
    3:38pm
    I grew up in public housing, and my mother was very house proud as were many neighbours. The difference was our parents had jobs albeit low paying. Not politically correct, but these days many in public housing don't work and have mental health or drug and alcohol issues. There is a loss of self esteem which translates to how they look after things. Also, the housing authority used to keep up a planned maintenance schedule but through years of govt cutbacks this no longer seems to exist.
    splinter
    8th Mar 2016
    3:40pm
    I agree that many people find themselves through no fault of their own living in poverty. As my late father-in-law used to say " give to people $1000 each, one would increase it & others would blow the lot & still expect someone to give them more to waste" Another old saying " If you can't afford it don't buy it"
    Anonymous
    9th Mar 2016
    7:24am
    ''Give to people $1000 each one would increase it others would blow the lot...'' is a truism, Splinter, but many never get the $1000 in the first place. Poverty isn't necessarily the result of poor money management. Sometimes, it's the result of never getting an opportunity to break out of a cycle someone is born into.

    ''If you can't afford it, don't buy it'' is also wise advice, but what if it's food or shelter for your children or essential medical care for a sick child? We lived in poverty because we had a disabled child whose treatment cost us a small fortune. We were both orphans who had no education or training, low self-esteem due to a history of abuse and deprivation, shitty jobs on low pay, poor health due to early abuse and neglect, no guidance or support...

    We worked our way out of it, eventually. But buying what we couldn't afford (medical treatment for our child) gave our child a quality life. Worth the cost, for sure, but society should never allow this to happen. And yet I know so many who grew up as we did, then faced challenges in adult life, and just never got over the hurdles. They are good people who work hard, who don't buy what they can't afford, and who would increase $1000 if it were ever given to them, but who just never get a break in life. And yes, some eventually just give up and turn to a life on welfare taking drugs and alcohol to dull the pain. When it's too hard for too long, some will quit the race.

    There's another saying: ''Before you abuse, criticize and accuse, walk a mile in my shoes''. Many here should take heed of that one. Condemning is just too easy.
    Rae
    9th Mar 2016
    6:36pm
    Life isn't always fair Rainey. I'm glad you were able to provide for your child.

    I think it disgraceful in Australia that we do not have a functioning welfare and health system so that you had support when you needed it.

    Too many who don't need it get it and those who do need it often go without.

    Total lack of efficient organisation.
    moke
    8th Mar 2016
    3:55pm
    My heart goes out to aged pensioners looking for accommodation. My mother rented in a new block of Housing Commission unit that we were told were for pensioners and that a separate unit had been allowed for a caretaker. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA never happened and the last time I went past the units the front was overloaded with druggies, drunks and hoodlums. Fortunately mother was in care by then and what happened to the other pensioners I have no idea since I left town. How do the Government think that the aged are able to live safely with some of the unemployed younger hoodlums in the same accommodation.
    Rae
    8th Mar 2016
    4:16pm
    It is the downsizing of the people employed to care and maintain order that is a problem. It could easily be fixed.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    10:28pm
    The place where I am living was built for People OVER 50 !! But some Imbecile in their wisdom thought it would make a fine Drug and Boozer hangout for the Bewildered ! :-( :-(
    Mike
    8th Mar 2016
    4:31pm
    With reference to Mogo's comment. Hockey, after calling disabled rorters, whilst he and his cronies were rorting the travel allowance at $288 a night each, whilst staying in his Canberra holiday house. He later boasted that he and his wife bought that Canberra holiday house cheaply by lying and rorting. Since its rorted taxpayers money that bought that Canberra holiday house,, It should be confiscated and given to the homeless.,
    Old Sailor Bushie
    8th Mar 2016
    5:14pm
    MD - You speak of "people being responsible for their own welfare". Well --and good ! However, that bespeaks a culture first of example; then of education; then of reasonable expectations in a life lived in a society that functions to satisfy the psychological needs of many varied individuals -as many, in fact, as compose it. Finally, we come to the availability of physical resources sufficient to render life's necessities sustainably in slightly greater amounts than those required for subsistence; but not to the levels of excess that have become customary in unmindful societies as exemplified by that developed by the majority of North American descendants of the 15th,16th Century -and onwards- European interlopers to flood that Continent. Australia has been dominated by a broadly similar crew, yet, beginning in small ways was bidding fair to evolve something much better in terms of a blended society. I pay tribute to the Australians I've seen over the years who have rejected or discarded forms of denigration and disrespect for one another's "others" without becoming "precious" about it: and particularly admire those young people who disdain those who persist in them. I am old, now; have lived and worked with a great variety of different people ,,,, but am fortunate to be able to echo Mark Twain by saying out of my own experiences "...If you take care to associate only with respectable folk of your own age and class; pretty soon you will be acquainted with any number of very respectable dead people..." Generations of Governments in this country have been busy sequestrating the carrots of a life spent here, and exporting them to foreigners. The donkeys, meanwhile have been becoming increasingly insensitive to the sticks they've been substituting. In time, they will start responding with some serious kicks. Read__"Political Ponerology -- A Science of Evil Adjusted for Political Purposes" (Andrzjei Lobachewski).
    Carole
    8th Mar 2016
    6:07pm
    I worked as a Property Manager for 13yrs and it didn't take me long to realize it was impossible to say that one "class" of people were any better or worse than any other. I had Doctors who were a disaster, people on the dole who were great, older people who messed up and young ones who were totally responsible. And all of those in reverse. The quality of a tenant totally depended entirely on who was sitting in front of you, your ability to judge someone's character in a very short space of time, how good some were at spinning a story and how good you were at reading between that story's lines. Anyone who thinks otherwise shouldn't make unwise judgements and comments until they've been in that position. If your Property Manager can't do any of the above on a regular basis then he/she is in the wrong job. Happy to say I'm now retired and no longer have to work at one of the most stressful jobs on the planet.
    I do agree that the government should start to look after their own needy before subsidising anyone and everybody who arrives on our shores.
    Radish
    8th Mar 2016
    9:48pm
    You are absolutely spot on Carole....as I have said previously I would never own a rental property...no way.
    Joybells
    9th Mar 2016
    9:14pm
    Extremely well said Carole. Bit like you can't judge a book by it's cover. Oh and I have just come home from watching"Lady in a van" Maggie Smith was once again brilliant and well worth watching. Had no idea it was to promote the homelessness in the elderly,
    Missskinnylegs
    8th Mar 2016
    6:32pm
    I am a new pensioner, have to work part time as I cannot afford rent on pension alone. I am on housing list but every immigrant - legal or otherwise - dumps me further down the list and I am not happy with this. My first rental unit in Sydney was 25 years long, fantastic landlord who said the unit looked as good as when I first moved in as when I left it - had many flatmates but they all knew the rules.I currently get some rental assistance but live modestly so I can stay in my area and social network. Friends of mine owned stunning property in Palm Beach - rented it out one Xmas to surgeon + family for $5k a week and it was almost trashed beyond repair - they could not understand how disgusting the rich and mighty could be. Do not tar everyone on low incomes with the same brush - it could be you one day - Karma has an odd way of teaching you a lesson.
    Hash
    9th Mar 2016
    8:41am
    It is not easy to live in Australia, if you are on the pension, and have to pay rent, also if you do own your house, it is a bit easier.

    Our biggest problem in Australia is payment of bills - electricity, gas and water etc.

    Some Pensioner's have decided to move to other Countries, like Bali, Philippines, Thailand, where these services or a lot cheaper.
    particolor
    8th Mar 2016
    8:16pm
    How many of the Recent Arrivals are living in a car ?? None I'll bet !! :-( :-(
    Dot
    8th Mar 2016
    11:21pm
    Here in Perth we have newly arrived in Australia wounded back in her country living in a home compliments of the Australian tax payer and her husband is her carer. Tell me how can this be.
    Mad as Donald Trump is, some one like that is what this bl--dy country needs.
    particolor
    8th Mar 2016
    11:41pm
    All well get is more of the same ! :-( :-(
    And they'll open a Field Hospital for Wounded Arabs !! :-)
    Pablo
    9th Mar 2016
    11:17am
    Totally correct particolor and Dot, we DO need someone like Trump who seems to be promising what we all want, which is looking after our own before we even contemplate migrants/refugees/whatever they are.

    They come here for our welfare and then just continue to rip it off with their laziness, and meanwhile many Australians and GENUINE refugees miss out because it seems there is not enough to go around.

    We need a concerted government program to improve the lot of our aged people, and forget about these ripoff migrants being thrust on us by the useless United Nations.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:30pm
    I don't mind giving Aid to worthy GENUINE People, but Mongrels that want to force their Ideals and Barbaric Views upon us is an entirely different story ! :-(
    Dot
    8th Mar 2016
    10:38pm
    I give up, there's no hope or future for our old folks. All Political parties are only concerned with votes and they are bowing to all foreigners that have landed on our shores in the past 15 years who are also been housed and receiving welfare beyond our wildest dreams.
    As for the poor darlings they are on no use or benefit to the scum that we elect in to
    Government. All I can say God help us all.
    particolor
    8th Mar 2016
    10:53pm
    By 2017 No Australian Pensioner will be Living in a Car ! :-) :-)
    Anonymous
    9th Mar 2016
    7:04am
    By 2020, no Australian pensioner will be living in a home they own.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:43pm
    And if the Dimwit Government doesn't do something about those Bludging Barbarians No Australian will be Living :-( :-(
    Travelling Man
    8th Mar 2016
    11:35pm
    Happy cyclist, with your distorted view of reality you are undoubtedly a traffic hazard! Travelling Man.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:46pm
    LMAO. When I saw that on You/Tube ! :-) :-) Move up the Centre please room for 1 more ! :-) Coming to Town near you SOON !! :-(
    pfbnug
    9th Mar 2016
    3:12am
    How much of the public housing list is taken up by Muslim "refugees" and their extended families. They have the first claim, but it should be the citizens who have worked and lived here all their lives. Remember this at the polling box!
    Hash
    9th Mar 2016
    7:37am
    Yes you are right about. citizens, should come first, how many refugees, are living in tents, car or having to sleep on park benches.

    None of this is new, look what happen in 1975 on,after the Vet War.

    People had to move out of their public housing, to house Vet people.

    Some one told me this happened, at Richmond in Victoria.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:53pm
    O Well remember this time all right pfbnug ! The Vote will be that big a Mess that the Governor General will have to run the show until they find some Honest Reputable Replacements for those Greedy Rogues ! :-) :-)
    Ps.. :-) :-)
    pfbnug
    9th Mar 2016
    3:22am
    P.S. If you want to see how the government uses our taxes to house AND FEED Muslim illegals find out about the Cocos and Keeling Islands.It is all out there!
    particolor
    21st Sep 2016
    5:58pm
    Adventures in Paradise !!:-) :-)
    Hash
    9th Mar 2016
    7:17am
    I think one of the biggest problems in Australia today, is their is not enough work, the jobs or just not there. In the 1960's there was jobs every where, factories, had signs out, wanting staff all the time, you could finish working for one factory, walk next door, and get a job in another factory, saddly these good days are gone.

    No one should have to live in a tent or car in Australia, the system is falling apart, I think that in time things need to change, for a start electricity, gas and Water needs to be put back in to the Government hands again.

    Today you have to pay for everything, street parking, hospital parking, beach parking, shopping centre parking, etc, etc.

    I asked a polly a few years ago, where is all of this money going, he did not know.
    B j
    9th Mar 2016
    9:57am
    The affordable housing situation is in dire straights.Someone in government needs to have the guts to do something about this.There is a number of reasons people are in this situation I was one of these people went on the waiting list took only 3 yrs.The accomodation was nice I was the only one working in my unit block was an eye opener living amongst drug addicts,alcoholics,anti social behaviour etc.I stayed there until I was able to afford to rent in the private market.The worst idea the Governent ever come up with was have all the social housing in the one estate (ghetto's).My advice to anyone that is a renter is to start thinking early about the future & not rely on government for any handouts.
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:56pm
    Hmmm ? That sounds like where I live ! :-(
    Radish
    10th Mar 2016
    6:22pm
    Bj, I totally agree with your last sentence and any person who does not take heed (those in the workforce now I mean) is a fool.

    You cannot rely on there being a pension ...or much of one anyway.
    People need to plan for their retirement years; meandering through life thinking the government will be there to support you without you putting aside some additional funds is living in dream land.
    ex PS
    21st Mar 2016
    9:18pm
    Why on earth would you bother planning for your retiremnet when the government seems to be hell bent on punishing you for doing so?
    Buy a house instead of renting all your life and the government will take it off you to pay for your pension.
    Put extra money into a Super Scheme and the government will take it when you die so that your children get nothing.
    You're better off spending your money on luxuries and only putting the minimum into Super and letting the tax payer support you in your old age.
    I have done as you suggested Radish and feel totally ripped off.
    Is this an agenda by the government to get us all to top ourselves so that we can leave something for our kids? If so they should at least give us the drugs that will allow us to go with dignity. Soylant Green anyone?
    Bj, the only problem with spreading out public housing is that you run the risk of devalueing decent peoples homes where the few bad tennants move in. Much prefer having a blacklist for tennants who do the wrong thing with a clause in their contracts stating that if they damage or refuse to maintain the accomodation their in they will be thrown out and will not be allowed into public housing again.
    speakup
    9th Mar 2016
    10:38am
    There is a simple method to increase Public Housing availability immediately ,by allowing single Pensioner couples to live in the same home without affecting their single Pension allowance,this is achieved by giving Married Pensioners the same allowance as two single Pensioners .
    The Government at the same time saves the Australian Taxpayer Thousands of dollars in salaries for Government SNOOPERS ,but most of all giving homeless Citizens a roof over their heads and allowing Pensioners to marry without loss of income.IS THIS TOO SIMPLE???
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    9:38pm
    Yep TOO SIMPLE ! :-) Our governments only deal in Entirely Incomprehensible Complications ! :-(
    Torch
    9th Mar 2016
    11:35am
    In reply to East of Toowomba . Re pay 80 % of your single pension and receive full board in a nice self contained unit and all food . East wanted to know if enough left for all the other "necessities" of life . Probably not , but we were discussing people who live on the streets or in their cars . Single pension is about $433 pw plus various allowances .Pay 80% for rent and food is 347 pw . note all meals prepared for you . remaining 20% is about $86 pw . Not a lot . Most residents at Moe didn't have a car . Trains and buses at hand . Some had a little money put away to spend at will and others didn't . All were very happy with the fact that they had a sound accomadation and all food . None smoked .They paid their own electricity from their own funds . If for what ever reason you get to this position and have no means of your own then this is a really good deal , and in my opinion the Australian pension system is extremly generous . That's where the problem lies . It has become unsustainable and understandably no one wants to give up what they currently have . Me too . I want my share and have to run through the hoops of asset and income testing which were never part of the original system . But now it all comes from borrowed money and sooner or later those who are left to repay the borrowings will start to object to this massive and growing burden . But until we can get a progressive government to really unlock the potential of this country and genuinely turn it back to the free and lucky country that we once had , I for one will keep putting my hand out for the pension that was promised to me for the last 50 years .
    Radish
    9th Mar 2016
    9:34pm
    There is a lovely complex about 1 mins drive from me and it is full of pensioners who do get full board and have a nice one bedroom unit with a small living/loung room and a small kitchenette with a frig and microwave.

    There is a communal kitchen when all meals are served and a lounge area. Same situation as you outlined Torch.

    Lovely complex and if I was without accommodation etc this would be a lovely place to live. You can also have a dog.
    Precious 1
    9th Mar 2016
    10:58pm
    I think these people living in mobile accomodation want the powers that be to hand them a flat unit or house on a plate without the customary searching themselves.
    i hsd it vety hard years ago but the thiught if absolutely no where to live ever came to my mind..come on you people out there for heavens sake would you like to go live in another country under dictatorship?????
    particolor
    9th Mar 2016
    11:41pm
    No thanks We are happy with the one we have here for now !! :-)
    Precious 1
    9th Mar 2016
    11:01pm
    People have been spoilt..i live in social housing a 2 bed unit beautifully appointed but some here treat them like living in pig swill.

    These people should be and are I believe bring put out...these types shoud go help the crippled and lame in third world countries and live on rice for a month..then they may see the error of their ways...
    Radish
    10th Mar 2016
    6:18pm
    I truly believe when you work hard for something you really appreciate it. There are people in society who probably will never work and know the enjoyment of making your own money and way in the world.
    When things are given to you in many cases it is not valued. At one stage I worked for the Housing Commission and I have heard and seen it all; believe you me!
    How some people can live like pigs I find truly disgusting. In many cases children are being raised in shocking environments. Very, very, sad.
    Precious 1
    9th Mar 2016
    11:08pm
    I think these people have no references and THAT is the main problem I rented a lovey house for $110 dollars a week for 7 years....on getting a social housing unit in a small block near every convenience you can imagine i thought i had won a $1 M dollars..people arent allowed to charge a senior anymore yhan one quarter if theur income.....my bond was minimal and my home us really and truly my castle..
    particolor
    10th Mar 2016
    9:11pm
    Lucky You :-)
    Want some CHOICE Neighbours ? I'll get some transferred for You ! :-) :-) Then I can live in Peace ! :-)
    Precious 1
    9th Mar 2016
    11:16pm
    IT started with the breakdown of the family and this family Law here in Oz should be radically changed..children in breakup should go straightaway to their grandparents or responsible family member with no money ...pensions or whatever attached to this..we need a revolution to change lifestyle hanits if expecting money given in our democracy..people have to Take resonsibilty and if mentally unstable put in care....
    .
    Adrianus
    10th Mar 2016
    6:29pm
    I have seen a few people living in cars. Cant recall if any were old enough to be aged pensioners? Maybe?
    PIXAPD
    11th Mar 2016
    6:23am
    Affordable living is fine, $1000 fortnight with pension and supplements..it's a great life, no doubt about that.
    particolor
    11th Mar 2016
    7:51am
    I'm glad your Happy Mr Gloat :-)
    Adrianus
    11th Mar 2016
    9:47am
    Fuel would be the biggest expense. I agree PIXAPD, there are plenty of free campsites in Australia. Not all have showers though.
    particolor
    11th Mar 2016
    8:15pm
    I know one with a Waterfall ! :-) :-)
    ex PS
    14th Mar 2016
    3:46pm
    Don't worry the government has a devious but brilliant plan. Once they have loaned us the money to pay for our pensions using the homes that we paid for with our own money as collateral, and once we have passed on to that great tax haven in the sky.
    The government can sell them cheaply to the people who can't afford to buy a house under present circumstances, it can then use these houses as collateral to pay for these peoples pensions and so and so and so on.
    After all they have to do something with all the real estate that they will eventually end up with.
    Makes you wonder what will happen to the real estate market though?
    Mez
    21st Mar 2016
    2:44pm
    Most homeless are elderly women because Rent Assistance is PITIFULLY LOW and not in line with the HUGE INCREASES IN RENT OVER THE PAST DECADE!
    Also, it is due to OLDER MEN who resent and prevent women from having EQUALITY OF WAGES FOR WOMEN and hence would have had more super funds upon retirement as well as the fact that married women did not have to have super in its early days so when divorces occur, financial burdens increased.
    More public housing is URGENTLY NEEDED as well as more help for returned war veterans suffering with PTSD.
    Those men complaining of having had bad tenants only have themselves to blame for making BAD CHOICES!
    I had boarders who were on pensions and they were excellent!
    It is very important to carefully sus people out b4 taking them on as tenants and I had NEVER ASKED 4 A REFERENCE AS ANYBODY CAN GET A GOOD REFERENCE!
    However, I did record their person details like drivers licence and credit card numbers, etc. and one takes into their appearance, behaviour, speech, manners and general appearance like if they smell of alcohol or stench.
    particolor
    21st Mar 2016
    3:41pm
    "Sniff !" "Sniff !" " PASS " :-)
    Aussie
    25th Mar 2016
    4:08am
    Well is time to rent a great apartment somewhere ....Yeahhhhhh we got a new increase on our pensions .....Ok I guess is better that nothing.
    I am looking at Thailand and is looking pretty good to live very well with the pension only Yes very well have a look or better just come over and look at the place for retirement cheap and easy to live very well
    Have fun I am having lots of fun Yeaaaaaa from 72 and still a hipppyyyeee
    ex PS
    25th Mar 2016
    4:07pm
    Good onya Aussie, the LNP government is giving us two choices get out or be screwed for every cent we have. I don't rely on a pension but I am seriously considering taking myself and my money to a retiree friendly country. Much like the LNP backers who choose to take their profits to a tax dodger friendly country.
    particolor
    25th Mar 2016
    5:03pm
    No need to Move now ! :-) Malcolm just said We are the MOST Successful Multi Cultural Society on Earth ! :-) :-)
    Adrianus
    25th Mar 2016
    5:11pm
    At least in this country you can post some vitriol about the government with no fear of being charged with sedition and locked up.
    particolor
    25th Mar 2016
    5:29pm
    Yes ! At the Moment ! :-) Libel to change soon :-(
    Adrianus
    25th Mar 2016
    6:12pm
    parti, I don't know about that. Last time I checked the LNP were at very short odds to win the next election. :) But you are right there will eventually be a change of government which will attempt to finish what they started.
    particolor
    25th Mar 2016
    6:29pm
    Yep.. Don't call Wagga Wagga, Wagga !
    And don't call Shorty Shorten, Shorty ! :-)
    Oliva
    21st Sep 2016
    4:35pm
    So-where's the whanau?? family. Find your family and there you will find a meal and a bed and lots of nice people to talk to. For most in desperate situations this is the answer. Go Home! Then Govt needs to step in only for the folks that are "orphans"-that have no family.
    particolor
    21st Sep 2016
    6:00pm
    Hullo !! I know 2 more Pensioner living in their cars now !!:-( :-( :-(
    Aussie
    25th Sep 2016
    1:36am
    Olivia,
    Yes I have 3 kids no other family
    So I will ask my kids to give me a bed and food ..... Are you crazy ????

    They have there own life and is extremely difficult for them this days and I am not prepared to provide them more hell.
    They all live on apartments with only 2 bedroom and my daughter on a one bedroom.

    So what else you suggest ????? I suggest you think before you make this kind of statements.

    Will you give your kids more hell than they already have ????? I do not think so .....Think please

    With my reduce pension I am now overseas living very well ..... Thank you on a 2 bedrooms home with my own car and full fridge

    So Yeahhh that is my solution to do not sleep on the car and do not bother my kids that they are having a hard time.
    particolor
    13th Jul 2017
    5:19pm
    Good One Aussie !! I AGREE !! :-) :-)
    Adrianus
    13th Jul 2017
    6:28pm
    Yes, I agree too! It's very hard to sleep in a tuk tuk.
    particolor
    13th Jul 2017
    7:40pm
    I saw a Bloke living in one of those Meshasmits when I was a Kid !! :-) :-) :-)
    John
    13th Jul 2017
    2:11pm
    Yes I slept in my car for over six years until I manage to get a cheap studio apartment Well the government gets richer and richer MPs 12 business class flights are here superannuation only can dream about how concerned we can be on 250,000 a year 500,000 are you Well that is shit no money zone 350 a week when you pay rent of $200 a week leaves 150 the rich get richer the poo I get Paroo Why call MPs drive to work in the role because instead of being chauffeured driven why did they have to get 12 free flights are here what is there to clean $250 a night when you're not even sleeping in the hotel it's all icon I wish I could get into the government I would make sure all the wages Is cutting off normal free flights Northshore for driven cars norm or expenses for sleeping out in push your towels in fact it so suck the lot of the bastards
    John
    13th Jul 2017
    2:11pm
    Yes I slept in my car for over six years until I manage to get a cheap studio apartment Well the government gets richer and richer MPs 12 business class flights are here superannuation only can dream about how concerned we can be on 250,000 a year 500,000 are you Well that is shit no money zone 350 a week when you pay rent of $200 a week leaves 150 the rich get richer the poo I get Paroo Why call MPs drive to work in the role because instead of being chauffeured driven why did they have to get 12 free flights are here what is there to clean $250 a night when you're not even sleeping in the hotel it's all icon I wish I could get into the government I would make sure all the wages Is cutting off normal free flights Northshore for driven cars norm or expenses for sleeping out in push your towels in fact it so suck the lot of the bastards
    particolor
    13th Jul 2017
    5:25pm
    I A-GREED with you !! I have not seen ONE "Refugee" sleeping in a car yet ?? The must be all living in Comfort at SHY's Place !! :-)
    Christine
    15th Sep 2017
    6:05pm
    I was one of the women on the SBS Insight show, Women on the Edge. I was disturbed by the lack of discussion on solutions so started a Facebook group to look at solutions. From that we have developed two main working parties, one to put up an information website for those at housing risk, and another to put together a viable proposal for privately funded affordable housing developments. If you are either homeless or confronting homelessness, come and join us at https://www.facebook.com/groups/HousingAlternativesAustralia/


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