Federal and Territory Labor governments sign historic 10-year remote housing partnership agreement

Assistant Minister for Indigenous Australians

The largest remote housing investment in Northern Territory was signed today at the remote community of Milikapiti on the Tiwi Islands.

The new 10-year remote housing partnership agreement is designed to halve overcrowding in Aboriginal communities.

The Partnership Agreement represents a new way of working collaboratively with Aboriginal communities and housing organisations towards a better remote housing system across the Territory’s 73 remote communities.

The $4 billion agreement commits Federal and Territory governments working with all four NT Land Councils and Aboriginal Housing NT to work together to improve existing housing and build houses that are culturally appropriate and meet the climate challenges of the Northern Territory.

Construction of up to 2,700 new homes across the Territory will halve overcrowding in the next ten years, aligning with the National Closing the Gap targets with improvements in health, education and community safety, as well as opportunities for economic growth across the Territory.

Federation Funding Agreements between the NT and the Commonwealth, informed by this Partnership Agreement, will also include better repairs and maintenance in remote community housing and improvements and infrastructure upgrades in homelands.

This historic agreement builds on the work Territory Labor has initiated since coming to government in 2016, reaching almost 4000 new and improved homes across the Territory.

The Albanese Government will also extend its commitment to housing upgrades and improvements to essential infrastructure in Homelands, matching the Northern Territory Government’s ongoing $40 million investment over three years, representing a joint investment of $240 million over that period.

The federal government will also provide $1 million over two years to assist Aboriginal Housing NT to develop a community-controlled housing model.

This new National Partnership supports Local Decision Making, with a focus on flexibility to support opportunities for local and Territory businesses and employment, supporting Aboriginal Business Enterprises, and improving housing and tenancy of remote housing.

Attributable to Federal Minister for Indigenous Australians Linda Burney:

“This is a landmark housing agreement that is designed to tackle the problem of overcrowding in First Nations communities in the Northern Territory.

We know that overcrowding leads to poorer outcomes in terms of health, education and safety. If we invest in better housing, we will get better outcomes across the board.

This partnership with the Northern Territory Government, Aboriginal Housing NT and Aboriginal Land Councils is vital to successfully delivering homes for more communities across the NT. This is about a new way of doing things – in genuine partnership with communities and land councils to create a better remote housing system.

The Albanese Labor Government is committed to improving housing in remote communities and closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.”

Attributable to NT Minister for Remote Housing and Homelands Selena Uibo:

“Our Territory Labor Government has already overseen sweeping changes to the quality and number of homes in every remote community across the Territory, and I’m honoured to announce the extension of this program.

“We know that this has made a positive impact on the lives of many thousands of Aboriginal people, and this investment will not only yield more homes, but will also unleash a pipeline of construction over the next ten years that boost our Aboriginal workforce and benefit businesses across the Territory.

“This partnership agreement marks an unprecedented investment by both Territory and Commonwealth governments, and commitment to community consultation in planning, design and building works through Local Decision Making.”

“Since Territory Labor came to government in 2016, our housing tally is nearing 4000 homes, and now we are creating more homes, more work, and more training opportunities with this $4 billion investment that will go straight into the pockets of Territorians.”

Attributable to the Assistant Minister for Indigenous Australians, Malarndirri McCarthy:

“Improving housing is so important to closing the gap. That’s why we’ve made this historic joint funding commitment that will see more homes for families in remote communities. It will go a long way to easing serious overcrowding.”

/Public Release. View in full here.