Family’s cold comfort


Cockburn MLA Fran Logan with James Newton and his children Brock (9) and Shay (12). Picture: Jon Hewson        www.communitypix.com.au   d449401
Cockburn MLA Fran Logan with James Newton and his children Brock (9) and Shay (12). Picture: Jon Hewson        www.communitypix.com.au d449401

James Newton, who lives at the property with his wife and two children aged 9 and 12, reported bathroom wall water damage in November.

A Housing Authority officer judged that a complete bathroom renovation was needed before they delivered a portable shower to |the home in early January to |prevent further damage. But the shower had to be installed at the front of the property because it was too tall to be placed under the carport and there is no access to the backyard.

Mr Newton said the situation was a massive inconvenience, with a poor hot water system meaning it took up to four hours for the family to take showers.

He said things were also bad during hot weather, with the box heating up like a sauna.

“I was told the renovations would be finished in January and it’s now February,” he said.

“The hot water doesn’t last long and you have to wait an hour before it heats up again.

“With four people we’re not finished until nine or 10pm.”

Opposition housing spokesman and Cockburn MLA Fran Logan said the delays were unacceptable.

“I have seen situations like this before where the Housing Authority has provided shower units for customers but the length of time these repairs are taking and the fact it’s so exposed to the street is just unacceptable,” he said.

“It’s unacceptable for James himself but it’s terrible for his wife and kids. It’s demeaning to them.”

Housing Authority service delivery general manager Greg Cash said work to renovate the bathroom would start this week and should be finished by February 23.

“The delay in commencing renovation works resulted from the need to call for quotes,” he said.

“Housing has apologised to the tenant for the delay and provided a rental concession for the inconvenience. ”