House debates

Wednesday, 28 February 2024


Help to Buy Bill 2023, Help to Buy (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2023; Second Reading

12:07 pm

Photo of Luke HowarthLuke Howarth (Petrie, Liberal Party, Shadow Minister for Defence Industry) Share this | Hansard source

Exactly, member for Grey. It gets better. There were 1,128 less couch surfers. That's people that have gone through separation, kids that have had fights with their parents sleeping at their mate's house on the couch. Homelessness reduced by 1,128 under the coalition.

We heard the Minister for Indigenous Australians and the Prime Minister opposite, when they were spruiking the Voice, talking about overcrowding. Guess what? Overcrowding went down under the coalition. We reduced it by 3,193 people. There were 3,193 fewer people in severely overcrowded dwellings, which mainly impact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and Pacific Islander people that are living in Australia. That's our record. They are the facts. You can't dispute them.

Do you know what went up? Supported accommodation. There were 3,056 more people in supported accommodation. Do you know when that happens? It's when the government builds more houses to help women and children escaping DV. They are counted as homeless because they don't have a lease, but they are living in brand-new houses. It's still homelessness, and we will continue to work on that. Is the minister doing anything about it? Is she talking about these figures? I can tell you now that there wasn't a government in Australia talking about these homelessness figures until the Morrison government started doing it. Most members in this House wouldn't even know that there are five different categories of homelessness.

There were more people in boarding houses as well, but the Morrison government wrote, with the Queensland Labor government, to all boarding houses on how to reduce homelessness. It reduced in Queensland. Do you know the worst state for homelessness? Victoria. It went up by some 6,000 people in that space of time. Pathetic. Do you know what the best state was? New South Wales. We had a Liberal government at the time.

So the reality is that when it comes to homelessness I am prepared to back the coalition in every day of the week because the record shows that we had a significant impact in government in reducing it. When the next census comes out in 2026, if the Albanese government is still in power, I expect to see a big increase in homelessness. I don't want to, but the minister has had two years to act, to get cracking and to start talking about these things rather than schemes like this that cost $5.5 billion that we don't particularly need.

The coalition will take our super homebuyer scheme to the next election. We will be taking that scheme into Bennelong. We are happy to debate the member opposite, who got in on the back of the lie that that they wouldn't change the stage 3 tax cuts.


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