Anglicare Australia says that today’s Code of Conduct on leases has left out residential renters, focusing instead on businesses and commercial tenants.
“Renters are on the frontline of this downturn. Many are losing their incomes, and some are scared of being forced out of their homes,” said Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers.
“Last week’s moratorium on evictions was a good start, but it’s also left many people confused. Renters can’t be evicted because of financial stress, but in most of Australia they can still be evicted for no reason at all. We’re already seeing stories from the frontline of people being evicted with nowhere to go.
“In some parts of the country, tenants are even being evicted from public housing – in the midst of a health crisis. Governments should be leading private landlords by example, instead of making a mockery of the eviction moratorium.
“Today’s Code of Conduct was a lost opportunity to provide fairness and clarity to renters once and for all.”
Ms Chambers said that states and territories must step up and provide fair and clear assurances to tenants.
“State and territory leaders have now agreed to rent relief for commercial tenants, helping them avoid a debt trap. Residential renters trying to keep a roof over their heads deserve the same respect. Mounting debts for renters would be a recipe for disaster.
“We also need a moratorium on all evictions. So far, only Tasmania has committed to honouring the moratorium by stopping all evictions during this pandemic. We need every other government across Australia follow their lead.
“In the midst of this crisis, we must make sure that renters can keep a roof over their heads – and stop any more Australians from falling into homelessness.”