Make Renting Fair

Renters, advocates and social service representatives came together to campaign for fairer laws for renters

It has been more than 10 years since the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 (WA) was last reviewed. With that in mind, the Make Renting Fair Alliance, comprised of a coalition of Western Australia’s key community organisations, including Shelter WA ran a Make Renting Fair Campaign workshop for concerned renters, advocates and the social services sector.

More than 40 people attended workshops which ran over two days.

Tactical skills can help push for change

Using the Tenancy Ten, the ten key issues of concern identified by the Alliance which need to be addressed, participants learnt some tactical skill to help them push for change.

[L-R] Trish Owen from Tenants’ Action Group WA and Vachel Spirason from Tenancy WA

One part of the workshop covered how to lobby a Member of Parliament. This session was run by Sharryn Jackson who was the Member for Hasluck from 2001 to 2004 and again in 2007 to 2010. Ms Jackson also covered how personal rental stories could be shared through the media.

The session concluded with a look at the process of making a submission.

Vachel Spirason who helped run the session said it was a great opportunity to gather support for much needed changes.

“The campaign workshops were a wonderful opportunity to connect with a wide cross section of tenants who are all keen to make renting fair in WA,” he said.

“The diversity of attendees goes to show how broadly the issues of rental reform touch our whole community. We know more people are renting now than ever before and they are doing it for longer, in many cases they will be renting for life. As such, people just want renting to offer a safe, secure and affordable place to call home. Unfortunately at the moment our tenancies act doesn’t give people that. I believe that’s why we have had so many people sign up to the workshops and also respond to our online survey which currently has 800 responses and counting.”

The Residential Tenancies Act is currently being reviewed. You can make your submission here.