Chesters gathers stakeholders to discuss Bendigo’s disability housing crisis

A group of stakeholders, including representatives from local, state and federal government, and local disability services, will meet today to address issues surrounding the lack of appropriate safe and affordable disability housing in Bendigo. 

Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters MP, was moved to form the Bendigo Disability Housing Working Group after meeting parents who face a future without suitable local accommodation and support for their adult disabled children. 

“The parents I have met with are in a  desperate situation. Many of them live with and care for their adult disabled children around the clock with little or no respite. It’s taking a huge toll on their families, finances, relationships with other children and their own health. 

“A workable disability housing scheme requires flexibility. Families tell me that what they want is the opportunity to sit down with an independent advocate and talk through a range of options to suit their own situation,” she said. 

“The aim of this group is to share knowledge,  ideas and come up with a plan locally to solve this ticking time bomb,” said Ms Chesters. 

“We need to map and understand the unmet demand that we currently have here in Bendigo. Once we have a greater understanding of the local needs, we will have a clearer ask for local, state and federal governments. 

“We have many dynamic organisations working in this space in Bendigo. I’m looking forward to collaborating with them so we can identify the needs and possible solutions for disability housing.” 

Participants expected to attend include:

  • Hon. Jacinta Allan MP, Maree Edwards MP
  • COGB Mayor Cr. Peter Cox
  • Haven Home Safe
  • Golden City Support Services, RADIUS, AMICUS
  • HACSU Workforce representatives
  • Advocacy groups Quality Living Options, MASARG
  • Plus carers who attended the meeting with the Shadow Minister, Jan McLucas earlier this year

 The inaugural meeting of the Disability Housing Working Group will take place at HAVEN Home Safe in Bendigo today (Friday 3 July).