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The Western Australian (WA) Department of Housing is concerned about the significant amount of money required to repair damaged houses in the Kimberley.
Only seven of the 130 state housing tenants evicted in WA since 2011 have been from the Kimberley, however, the average cost of repairing vandalism or damage to a public house in the Kimberley is more than double the metropolitan average.
The department's Steve Parry says it is not that more damage is done but that repairs cost more in the remote north. 'It's probably over-represented in terms of costs - it's very expensive up in the Kimberley, around about two-and-a-half times the cost of some work being done in Perth,' he said.
However, in an attempt to combat some of the damage done to state housing, the WA Housing Department has released new educational resources for Indigenous tenants, Deadly tenants, deadly homes. Films in the Kriol, Walmajarri and English languages explain the rules of WA's new Residential Tenancies Act, and are shown to residents living in new or refurbished community housing.
Aboriginal Housing Services director Graeme Jones says it is a better way of getting the message across. 'It picks up on the fact that the Aboriginal culture is an oral storytelling culture and we wanted to very deliberately present our communications in a way that meets those expectations,' he said. 'The feedback we're having is that it's been really popularly received.'
Source: ABC Indigenous