MOVED ALONG: Two former Johns Landing residents Wazza and Snow picture there last year were part of the council's big move .
MOVED ALONG: Two former Johns Landing residents Wazza and Snow picture there last year were part of the council's big move . Peter Gardiner

Closure 'not displacing others' on to Noosa streets

CLOSURE of Johns Landing camp ground on Noosa River and relocation of residents is not driving other homeless people on to Noosa streets.

The former private camp site for years has acted as a cheap housing option especially for struggling families who might otherwise be living out of cars, but it has been bought by the Noosa Council and closed for environmental rehabilitation.

More than 90 former residents have been rehomed, but Councillor Joe Jurisevic asked if this would "put additional pressure on the existing (housing) stock that's there”.

Cr Jurisevic mentioned the appearance of homeless people in the park along Gympie Tce "and the like” from time to time.

"That's not uncommon, but are we facing a greater challenge in finding locations or homes for them?” he said.

Council community services director Alan "Fox” Rogers said the Social Strategy Working Group set up by the council agreed that its first priority would be to address the social issues at Johns Landing.

Mr Rogers said no doubt there was a lack of this type of housing in Noosa and on the Coast, but he said not all the families from John Landing had relocated locally.

Mayor Tony Wellington said suggestions the current homeless people were a product of "our work at Johns Landing” were "erroneous”.

"The people who have been on the street locally at the moment were here or have moved here, but are not a product of our effort at Johns Landing,” Cr Wellington said.

He said a council staffer was helping at Orange Sky Laundry (for the homeless) and was working with local police to help keep these people safe.

Mr Rogers said a major aim of the community "round table” partnership with charity groups, govern- ment welfare agencies and the Department of Housing, was to try to relocate families close to their schools.

"It really was a partnership - that's what made it work,” he said.

"Affordable housing now is the current focus (of the social strategy working group).”

The council has been nominated as a finalist in the 2018 LGMA Awards for Excellence in the collaboration category.


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