700+ flood affected households still waiting for ‘temporary’ housing in Northern Rivers: NSW Auditor-General’s Report 

Late last month, the NSW Audit Office released a Report into processes around emergency accommodation and housing shortfalls in the Northern Rivers and Central West of NSW following large-scale flood events in 2022. The findings of the Report highlight what many on the frontline know: waitlists are still climbing and ‘temporary’ accommodation options are looking increasingly like long-term options for many families.

Northern Rivers findings:

  • 11 temporary housing villages with 546 dwellings have been constructed in the wake of the catastrophic February/March 2022 flood events
  • There are a further 724 households on the waitlist for temporary housing in the Northern Rivers and this demand is unlikely to be met
  • Temporary housing villages must be dismantled within 5 years of their establishment – meaning approximately 546 households will need to be relocated in the Northern Rivers by 2027/2028 with no clear plans on how this will be rolled out in an orderly and trauma-informed way.

Central West findings:

  • Eugowra and surrounds were unequivocally smashed by flooding in November 2022, resulting in approximately 100 temporary pods and caravans being installed on private properties and rural blocks throughout the Central West for emergency accommodation
  • There is no official waitlist for flood affected households still seeking temporary accommodation, with government agencies claiming that all demand has been met   
  • It is not clear whether a timeline has been set for dismantling and removing pods/caravans and transitioning households to more permanent accommodation.

You can read the full report here.