65 year old Thornbury renter Louise Goode was forcibly evicted from her home by police last week. Louise has lived there for 29 years.
An ongoing dispute with her community housing corporation led to Louise’s home being fenced off, with police and private security patrolling to prevent her entering her own property. Leaving behind her belongings and pets, Louise was forced into homelessness.
We are 31 days from the end of the eviction moratorium, however as community housing was excluded from the moratorium’s terms, the most vulnerable renters were denied eviction protections.
Louise is now homeless, and joins many women in their 50s – 70s who are disproportionately affected by an out of balance housing market, and at increasing risk of homelessness.
We call on Minister for Housing Richard Wynne, Minister for Women Gabrielle Williams, Minister for Ageing Luke Donellan, Federal Member for Cooper Ged Kearney and Greens Minister for Housing Samantha Ratnam to immediately support Louise to return to her home.
Decent public housing would mean Louise wouldn’t be at the mercy of an opaque community housing bureaucracy.
RAHU will continue to organise for renters’ rights, and defend against eviction, so that people like Louise can stay at home.
Sign the petition to Keep Louise home
Quotes attributable to: Louise Goode, RAHU member
I’ve established roots here, I really made it into home. If I’m not safe after 29 years, how is anyone new going to be safe?
There’s no other way to describe it, I feel they’ve pursued me like prey, it’s been constant from one year to the next. They cornered me, there was a power imbalance.
Quotes attributable to: Eirene Tsolidis Noyce, Secretary, RAHU
This has been Louise’s home for 29 years. The fact that she can be evicted like this during a pandemic is disgraceful, and speaks volumes about issues with community housing models.
The government needs to ask itself what’s good about this. No one deserves to be evicted, especially during a pandemic.
Louise has been evicted during the COVID19 eviction moratorium, so we’d like to ask Dan Andrews & the housing minister Richard Wynne – who’s actually safe against evictions?
It’s clear the Victorian Government isn’t considering the broader safety net needed for safe and secure housing, and we will continue the fight against evictions for all renters beyond this crisis.
Quotes attributable to: Sean, Thornbury renter & RAHU Member
Louise has experienced firsthand social housing being transformed from something “that worked” to where it is today – with decade long wait lists for public housing and predatory community housing organisations.
It shouldn’t be this hard for someone to stay in a home she’s established roots in and cares about so much.
Louise has spent 29 years of her life in this home, building her garden and helping her neighbours, and can’t see a future where she is living anywhere else.
I haven’t done the math, but 29 years of paying rent means she has probably paid for this property and RAHU and her wider community are ready to support her to keep her home.
Media contact: Paddy Gordon 0407 712 579 or email [email protected]
The Renters And Housing Union (VIC) is a member-run Union of renters and people in precarious housing, formed out of the rent strike as a response to the COVID19 crisis. We collectively organise for the right to safe and secure housing through self-advocacy, education, and frontline eviction defence.
Find out more and join RAHU https://rahu.org.au/