The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Association Calls for Government Action on Unfulfilled Commitments in 2024 Budget

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Association

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Association (NATSIHA) acknowledges the housing investments made in the 2024 Federal Budget. However, we express profound disappointment at the government’s failure to uphold commitments crucial to strengthening the housing sector.

The Joint Council agreed upon a housing sector strengthening plan in 2022. Subsequently, the Albanese Government reaffirmed this commitment when the Prime Minister handed down the 2024 Closing the Gap Implementation Plans earlier this year. NATSIHA, entrusted with delivering on this pivotal plan, has yet to receive the necessary funding to deliver it.

The commitments outlined in the Housing Sector Strengthening Plan remain unfulfilled. The recent Productivity Commission review clearly articulates the drastic changes required by the government to fulfil its commitments to closing the gap. Specifically, for sector strengthening plans to be effective, governments need to be held accountable for progressing the actions that they have agreed on.

Leading up to this budget, NATSIHA has actively engaged at the highest levels across the Commonwealth Government, meticulously refined the implementation plan, and developed project plans for each of the 14 action items outlined in the Joint Council housing sector strengthening plan. Additionally, we have taken the initiative to meet with state ministers, seeking the essential funding and support required to fulfil our obligations and implement the committed plan.

“It is profoundly disappointing to witness that despite our concerted efforts and commitment to our sector, our pleas have again fallen on deaf ears,” said Zachariah Matysek, Acting CEO of NATSIHA.

“The government’s failure to allocate the necessary resources jeopardises the progress toward addressing the critical housing needs within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.”

The Housing Sector Strengthening Plan is about empowering the First Nations housing sector to build capacity nationally and deliver housing through the models that we know work for our communities. Implementing this plan is a critical first step in ensuring that the housing investments made by the government are delivered successfully.

NATSIHA urges all Governments to honour their commitments; we stress the importance of integrating conversations across First Nations affairs to ensure comprehensive and effective solutions for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

About us:

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Association (NATSIHA) is the peak body responsible for addressing the housing needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Australia. NATSIHA is dedicated to community control, cultural empowerment and meaningful change in the First Nations housing sector. We envision a future where all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have housing that aligns with their diverse cultures and aspirations, benefiting not only the individuals and communities we serve but all Australians.

/Public Release.