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Mackellar's Housing Crisis

3 June, 2024:

Nothing consumes Sydneysiders like real estate, but in the last few years the gloss has well and truly worn off. Soaring rents, mortgages and house prices have become a source of pain and distress for many, and the difficulty for first-home buyers to break into the housing market is driving intergenerational inequality.

In my seat of Mackellar on the Northern Beaches of Sydney, the median house price is now $2.5 million, and for a two-bedroom apartment it is $1.3 million. The lack of affordable housing is causing social dislocation, as local children and grandchildren often must move far away from their families and networks in search of a home of their own. At the same time, I know the people of the Northern Beaches put a high value on our beautiful local environment and heritage, and many don't want to see this change.

That's why I'm holding the Mackellar People's Jury on Housing later this month. This exercise in deliberative democracy will bring together 30 people who have been randomly selected as representatives of our community. They will be asked to work with a range of experts for a day to come up with considered consensus solutions to the housing crisis that fit our community. This form of participatory democracy is crucial to building trust in our political system and in us as representatives of our community. It also provides legitimacy to the policies we advocate for on their behalf. (Time expired)