Presentation on theme: "NSW Housing Appeals Committee Community Agencies Information Forum 2011."— Presentation transcript:
NSW Housing Appeals Committee Community Agencies Information Forum 2011
The Housing Appeals Committee (HAC) Is an independent body that: Reviews decisions of social housing providers Promotes excellence in social housing provider policies & decision making
HAC jurisdiction Appeals by clients of social housing: Housing NSW Community Housing providers
The Consumer Trader and Tenancy Tribunal (CTTT) The Housing Appeals Committee (HAC) The NSW Ombudsman resolves disputes between tenants and landlords under the Residential Tenancies Act reviews decisions made under social housing policy by public and community housing investigates complaints against the conduct of public sector agencies Dispute resolution roles in NSW
Steps to appeal First level internal appeal Housing Appeals Committee Decision
What decisions can be appealed? Eligibility for wait-turn housing Priority Housing Private Rental Subsidy (PRS) Private rental products (e.g. Rentstart) Locational need Dwelling requirements (housing type / size) Offers of housing Length of lease
Transfer eligibility Former tenant classifications Property modifications for medical/ disability needs Succession of tenancy Calculation of rental subsidy Cancellation of rental subsidy (e.g. for allegations of rental fraud) What decisions can be appealed cont.
Housing Pathways & Appeals Changes in the way applicants and tenants apply for housing assistance from mid 2010 Separate lists now combined into a single state-wide Housing Register One common application form People can be listed for public and/or community housing
Pathways issues Clients are now assessed for all suitable housing options Confusion can occur about what a client has been assessed and not assessed for Documentation requirements of new form Timeframes have become extended due to workload of new system
Appeal Hearings All clients are interviewed as part of the appeal process: -85% face to face -15% by telephone Most hearings are held within 4 weeks of receiving the appeal Only HAC members and the clients (+ support) are present at the hearing. The housing provider does not attend Clients can give permission for others to speak on their behalf
Hearing Process 2 or 3 Committee members sit at each hearing – they usually take about an hour 2 or 3 Committee members sit at each hearing – they usually take about an hour The Committee reviews all relevant information in the client’s file including any new information presented by the client Clients may be accompanied by advocates, friends or family for support
HAC Statistics 2010/2011 355 appeals were heard last year 336 were from Housing NSW clients 19 were from community housing clients Only 12 appeals were from Aboriginal clients
Appeals: areas of concern Low number of appeals from Aboriginal people - yet many live in social housing or have difficult housing issues Community housing clients are not as aware of the appeals process Homeless people without support often find it difficult to put in an appeal
Advice for advocates Have the decision in writing and understand the rationale behind the decision Don’t rely only on local negotiation - use the appeals process! Encourage clients to appeal even if you think the appeal is likely to be unsuccessful Help the client to gather all relevant support documentation Be available to attend the hearing with the client or support them over the phone
Talk to us on: Telephone: 1800 629 794 or 02 8741 2555 Telephone: 1800 629 794 or 02 8741 2555 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Email: email@example.com@facs.nsw.gov.au Visit us at: Website: www.hac.nsw.gov.au Website: www.hac.nsw.gov.auwww.hac.nsw.gov.au For more information or advice
Discussion Points What are the main kinds of housing issues for the clients you assist? What are the main kinds of housing issues for the clients you assist? –Discuss what issues and decisions could be appealed What do you think the barriers are to clients using their appeal rights? What do you think the barriers are to clients using their appeal rights? –What can you suggest to help with overcoming these barriers?
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