A minute with Magnus

LINDER MagnusChurches Housing was at Penrith Uniting Church in late May for a forum on social and affordable housing, following up from the Penrith Speaks survey on affordable housing in collaboration with the Sydney Alliance (early on Saturday 17 March this year, 131 volunteers with the Sydney Alliance and Citizen Action Penrith Affordable Housing had 628 face-to-face conversations with Penrith residents and visitors).

The follow-up event on Saturday 26 May, was an important advocacy opportunity organised by the Uniting Social Justice Forum and included the Lord Mayor of Penrith, Senator Doug Cameron, Penny Leong MP the Greens housing spokesperson and Dr Tim Williams. To read the results of the survey click here.

To my surprise and delight, my own daughter, Annika, has featured in The Sydney Morning Herald (click here) as a lead-in to a story about the new Rental Affordability Index developed by SGS Economics and Shelter. Not a day goes by when we are not reading multiple stories in the news about housing affordability, homelessness and the impacts of housing stress. Let’s continue to shout the truth from the rooftops and laneways if you cannot afford a roof over your head, until we see reasonable solutions and policies at all levels of government. The market is already regulated and influenced by many policies – but the system is now so broken that a major re-think and re-set is required.

Finally, I have an invitation for you to collaborate with us. We began to write a list of reasons why housing affordability is such an issue (in plain English) and we see great value in collaborating within our sector to write up a definitive list with a short summary as to why and what the issues are.

For example, cheap interest rates, taxation policy fueling demand, empty apartments being used as ‘banks’ etc etc. This list could become The Dummies Guide to Housing (Non) Affordability. Part 2, of course, will be a similar list but based on possible solutions to the issues we listed in Part 1.

Sounds like fun, hey, so please join us.

Part 1 – REASONS:

  1. Summarise your reason/s into one heading e.g. land banking, globalisation of housing market
  2. Write a maximum of 300 words about each reason
  3. Keep the reason in plain English
  4. Email to yelland@churcheshousing.org.au


  1. Summarise your solutions/s into one heading
  2. Write a maximum of 300 words about each solution
  3. Keep the solution in plain English
  4. Email to yelland@churcheshousing.org.au


Have you given us feedback via our annual survey? If you received a link to our survey and haven’t yet responded, please do so because this provides vital feedback in our reporting. If you haven’t received the link and would like to participate, then please email philippa.yelland@churcheshousing.org.au