‘Roofs’ and homes – different concepts
Shelter SA, the peak body for housing in South Australia, has shared its vision ‘for every citizen in our state to have access to an affordable, safe place to call home’ in the context of a year-long examination of the operation of ‘for-profit rooming houses in South Australia’. The examination assessed ‘available research and data’ and consulted ‘residents, landlords and service providers in the sector’.
‘While there is variability in the quality of housing provided in this sector, and some landlords who endeavour to meet the needs of their residents, our study has identified that some rooming houses are well below accepted community standards… the congregate nature of rooming houses has meant that highly controlled approaches to management of vulnerable residents have become enshrined in the housing model.
‘At their worst, rooming houses contravene the rights of residents to privacy, visitation from family and friends, control over bedroom space and the details of everyday life. For vulnerable citizens facing multiple health and personal issues, a monitored and restrictive environment does not support recovery or independence, with established research confirming such environments can undermine mental health.’
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