Housing plays an important role in the health and wellbeing of Australians. People living without safe and healthy housing are more likely to experience poor health, higher levels of psychological distress and lower rates of employment and educational participation.
The shortage and poor condition of housing in remote communities means that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in these communities are more likely to be homeless or may end up living in an overcrowded house. There are also fewer opportunities for Indigenous people living in remote communities to buy their own home or have access to employment.
It is the Department’s job to advise the Minister for Indigenous Affairs on housing policy for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote communities. Through National Partnerships agreements, the Commonwealth funds the Northern Territory (NT), Queensland (QLD), South Australia (SA), and Western Australia (WA) to build new houses and repair older houses in remote communities, and make sure there are job opportunities and choices for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who wish to buy their own homes.
Council of Australian Governments
In 2008 the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed to the $5.4 billion National Partnership Agreement on Remote Indigenous Housing (NPARIH), which was replaced by the National Partnership on Remote Housing (NPRH) in 2016. When the NPARIH was in effect it included all the States and the Northern Territory (except the Australian Capital Territory). In 2014, Victoria and Tasmania finished early and exited NPARIH while New South Wales finished and exited in 2016. The main objectives are to reduce significant overcrowding, poor housing conditions and severe housing shortages.
The NPRH was negotiated with the State Governments and replaced the NPARIH on 1 July, 2016. The NPRH will run until 30 June 2018 and has secured $776.403 million for remote housing throughout the NT, QLD, SA and WA.
* The assessment of need for new houses in WA has changed since the original COAG targets were proposed. Because of this the funds were moved to Refurbishments where WA has exceeded their target.
Further information about the National Partnership Agreements is available.
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Programmes & Policies
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Housing affordability and home ownership
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National Affordable Housing Agreement
Remote Housing Review
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