Glebe Grapevine

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July 2014

Mixed News in NSW Budget

by Jamie Parker MP

There is mixed news in the NSW Budget for the Glebe community.The good news is that our work to get more money for repairs and upgrades is paying off. The budget for upgrades (on top of repairs) has increased again for our area with $3.410 million being allocated this year.

The sad tale of the housing in Cowper Street continues. Despite allocating over $12 million this year for construction it is still not due for completion until 2017. The plans still include selling off a large section for private housing despite the urgent need for more social and affordable housing.

The Liberal Government is continuing the Labor policy of selling houses to meet budget shortfalls. In the same way we stopped the sale of Glebe Youth Service we need to oppose the selling of public housing, maintain homes properly and ensure tenants are respected and valued.



Barney Gardiner of Millers Pt explains issues to the Public Meeting organised by Hands off Glebe.

Glebe residents met with Millers Point residents to combat the latest attacks on public housing.

Homes considered to be slums in the last century are now a property developer’s dream and the NSW Government wants to sell, sell, sell.

The previous and current NSW Governments between them have notched up over 200 relocations from Glebe and 500 from Millers Point public housing properties.

These relocations are usually made with the threat of tenancies being terminated if the offers are not accepted.

Hands Off Glebe is speaking to politicians from all parties about the future of public housing in this suburb. When they come doorknocking, ask them:

Does your party support ‘social cleansing’ of the city?

What will your party do to retain public housing in the city?

Does your party support the sale of public housing in Glebe?

Will your party properly maintain public housing in Glebe?

Will your party retain Cowper Street for public housing?

Who is spreading fear in the community?

Many Glebe public housing tenants fear what is going to happen to them. As a result some become immobilized and stay silent. Hands off Glebe is telling tenants the truth and is trying to help the community find its voice in opposition to these cruel and unjust policies.  This is a time to fight back, not a time for fear and silence.


Spotless has the contract for maintenance of public housing. We hear many complaints that Spotless takes ages to get anything done and that the work is often substandard and requires many call backs to fix the mess.

In May Spotless was launched on the stock exchange and the private shareholders raked in almost $1 billion for half their shares. The CEO made a cool $23 million on the deal.

The new Minister for Family and Community Services, Gabrielle Upton, claims her department is spending an extra $1.5 million on upgrading works in Glebe, including a large re-roofing program.As far as we can see, the results have been hit and miss, with a surprising number of homes by-passed altogether.

We think a better approach would be to get rid of Spotless and set up a local maintenance team of electricians, plumbers, carpenters, roofers and builders, who can take on and train locals.

In the meantime, if you need work done on your home and don’t have a spare lifetime to spend trying to get through on the maintenance line, call the Team Leader at Housing NSW’s Strawberry Hills Office on 9268 3480, or send a letter to:
Housing NSW, Strawberry Hills Office
219 – 241 Cleveland Street, Redfern NSW 2016


Australia’s first women’s refuge, Elsie, was established in Glebe in 1974. Last week manager Tanya Smith learned the service was to be taken over by St Vincent de Paul.

Under the NSW Government’s Going Home Staying Home program, 336 individual services have been consolidated into 149 packages operated by 69 non-government organisations.

Under the changes, women-only services will no longer exist as they do today and women dealing with trauma and sexual abuse may be offered counselling participation in residential programs with men. For women who have experienced domestic violence, such options are unacceptable and will therefore not provide them with practical assistance.

‘‘We don’t actually know what will happen with the service until they make some kind of announcement about the direction they want to take,’’ Tanya Smith said. ‘‘We hope it would still be kept as Elsie and as a domestic violence service for women and children.’’

Write to the Minister for Family and Community Services, Gabrielle Upton, asking her to reconsider the Going Home Staying Home program because of the impact it will have on services offered by Elsie to vulnerable women and children in inner Sydney.

That Leak — What Next?

 that leak2


The leak behind Mitchell Street has been fixed.  This is the culmination of a 12 month campaign by Hands of Glebe. After a lot of buck passing between Housing NSW, Sydney Water and Sydney City Council, Housing NSW finally fixed their part of the problem. However, there is still storm water which is a Sydney City Council responsibility.

Hands off Glebe has asked Councillor Irene Doutney to get Council to replace the parking signs in the lane so it can be cleaned efficiently without parked cars getting in the way. We have also asked that the gutters be reconstructed to facilitate easy draining of any storm water overflows.




Raffle results

First prize          Joyce
Second prizes Glebe Grapevine Bags       Kate, Maurice

Hands off Glebe Inc thanks ESCA  for donating the raffle prize.

ESCA restaurant 333B Glebe Point Road Glebe NSW 2037

Garden notes

Mulberry trees fruit in September, We will be looking for good fruiting trees so we can make jam to raise funds for our work. Can anyone help us on this?


As always we provide free worm liquid fertilizer and castings to interested people around Glebe.  Contact us if you can use some of this material.