Kamis, 20 Desember 2012

Tenants' advice over the holidays

As we count down to the end of the year on the Brown Couch, many of our friends and colleagues from the Tenants Advice and Advocacy Services (TAAS) have already loaded up the caravan and are on their way to a well earned break.


But don't worry - they'll all be back in early 2013, refreshed and ready to lend their expertise to tenants in need of a tip.

If you run into trouble in the meantime, and you need to know your rights, there will still be a couple of options available.

First, there's the Tenants' Rights Factsheets on the TAAS website.

Or, for more detailed information, you can access the Tenants Rights Manual online.

Then there's a limited Christmas Hotline, for urgent matters that just can't wait -


8117 3750
or
1800 251 101

We sincerely hope you don't need to make use of any of these services.


****


That's it from the Brown Couch for 2012 – a year to remember. It was, of course, the centenary of the New South Wales public housing system. We commemorated this with a series of posts that presented a potted history of the system, occasionally reflected in the goings-on of the day. And what, you may ask, did Housing NSW have to say on this most significant of anniversaries?


(Crickets!)

Nothing. Not a word. It should have. Many workers and tenants over the last hundred years have put a lot into public housing, and a centenary is an appropriate point at which to acknowledge it. And to forget the history of the system is to fail to understand all the dimensions of our present housing problems, and how things may be done differently and better in the future. (By the way, see how Victoria is commemorating the 75th anniversary of the public housing system there.)

This year we also had news that the NSW State Government proposes to repeal the 1948 Act, so upwards of 600 elderly tenants might worry if this is the last Christmas they'll spend in what have been their homes of many years. More happily, this year also saw long overdue law reform for boarding houses, and boarding house residents can look forward to having decent occupancy agreements and access to dispute resolution early in 2013. Hopefully other marginal renters won't have to wait much longer to be extended such a reasonable measure of justice too.

See you next year. Have a safe and enjoyable holiday season.


****



TAAS closure dates
24 December - 1 January
19 December - 4 January
20 December - 7 January
21 December - 1 January
24 December - 4 January
24 December - 4 January
24 December - 9 January
24 December - 1 January
24 December - 4 January
21 December - 9 January
24 December - 2 January
21 December - 4 January
24 December - 1 January
24 December - 2 January
24 December - 1 January
Koori TAAS closure dates
Greater Sydney
21 December - 4 January
North & North Western NSW
21 December - 9 January
Southern NSW
21 December - 4 January
Western NSW
21 December - 4 January
Resourcing body closure dates
Dtarrawarra
21 December - 2 January
Parks & Village Service
24 December - 1 January
Older Persons’ Tenants’ Service
24 December - 1 January
Tenants’ Union
24 December - 2 January