Government should step up after closure of South Mole – Letter to the Editor

Our article Rave party the last straw – Freo Ports closes South Mole to Campers, has been widely read and shared since it was posted. The Fremantle Ports’ decision has its supporters but questions arise as to why people find it necessary to camp out and where else they can go. In this Letter to the Editor, Jenny Dooney of Hamilton Hill says it’s time for the Government to step up to find adequate safe places for people who don’t have a roof over their heads to camp out. For more South Mole Letters to the Editor look here.

Dear Editor,

I think many people mistake people sleeping in their cars as tourists and people causing trouble. The reality is the vast majority of these people don’t have a home to call their own. The rental crisis and the cost of living has put affordable housing out of reach for thousands of people. Those people with the luxury of a roof over their head don’t understand what it is like for those people who are forced to live in their cars simply because there is no where else to go. The logistics these poor people have to go through every night finding a safe space to park for the night let alone cooking, cleaning, washing clothes, storing things while still trying to work and sleep in the car at night. I have heard so many times people say there are shelters and support available but the reality is these places have year long waiting lists. To pay to camp in your car at a camp site if you are lucky enough to find space available is over $350 a week and that is simply to camp in a tent. Camping is also not consistent as they can only book for times it is available not to mention you can leave anything if value in the tent so you would still have to pack up every day and set up each night.

The Government needs to step up and provide emergency accommodation for those living in cars. If there was a natural disaster funding and housing would be provided yet because it is an economical disaster that has left so many of these poor people homeless nothing is done. The government needs to set up camp sites where people can safely park their cars for the night and sleep in peace without being asked multiple times to move on. They need facilities to wash and use the toilet. We are living in a first world country and yet so many people are turning a blind eye because they think it would never happen to them and that these poor people put themselves in this situation.

I am lucky to have my own home and have never have had to worry about where will I sleep tonight and can I keep my child safe. We need to say enough is enough and ask the Government to step up and help these poor people and for god sakes have some compassion and stop hounding these people who never asked for this to happen.

Kind regards,

Jenny Dooney
(Address supplied)


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