Blitz on Sub-Standard Rooming Houses in Victoria
Monday, 20th July 2009 at 4:08 pm
The Victorian Government has set up a rooming house task force which includes representative from Not for Profit peak bodies and begun a blitz on what it describes as sub-standard rooming houses across the state.
The Government says it is taking action on those predatory operators of intentionally sub-standard rooming houses who prey on some of the most vulnerable members of the community. The crackdown is aimed particularly at private operators.
Last year, the Victorian Government introduced tougher regulations to give local councils more powers to enforce standards in rooming houses.
The blitz – using 12 new dedicated Consumer Affairs Victoria inspectors – will scrutinise more rooming houses, ensure more rooming houses are registered and more unscrupulous operators are made to comply with standards or face prosecution.
The Government says there have also been allegations of criminal activity in some rooming houses. It says inspectors will be on the look-out for this activity and will refer relevant matters to police.
A new rooming house taskforce, which has had its first meeting, will report back to Government within six weeks on a new set of minimum standards and enforcement of standards for rooming houses.
The taskforce includes representatives from peak groups such as the Victorian Council on Social Service, the Council for Homeless Persons, the Municipal Association of Victoria and the Real Estate Institute of Victoria, as well as housing providers.