Friday, September 17, 2010

Catch 22. Dealing with Anti-Social Behaviour.

For those who haven’t read Joseph Heller’s fine book, Catch 22 is a situation whereby no matter what you do, you can’t win.

For example:
One cannot get a job in a high-profile occupation without prior experience, but they cannot get experience without getting a job in a high-profile area.

Another example that Housing NSW use to full effect:
It takes longer than 30 days for staff to action an incident report.
Any incident reports over 30 days old are not current enough to use.

I attended a Housing Forum today where the Area Director said she wouldn’t have the answers to any questions because she had only been in the job for 3 weeks – and she was leaving in one week so she wouldn’t be able to follow up on any of the issues.
Begs the question why she bothered coming.

But the classic Catch 22 of the Day...
the Team Leader went on to explain the Anti-Social Behaviour procedures.
You can make a complaint about anti-social behaviour and it will be investigated.
Unless it is substantiated it can’t proceed to CTTT for action.
So how do you substantiate a claim?
Get a ruling at CTTT.



  1. I also found out that once the DoH office changes the client officer for a particular tenant then all of the complaints are trashed - in fact that tenant now has a clean slate (except for non payment of rent which stays on file) In other words, too many complaints against a neighbour, rather than deal with it DoH just changes the Client Officer and there is no longer anything for them to worry about. This is even beter than putting it in the to hard basket

  2. Ahhh - that is what happened to my file.
    They claim they "lost" my paperwork.

    The other thing that gets me - if you complain too much you are labelled a whinger
    but if you don't complain enough they say it's not "frequent and continuous".

    Another Catch 22, you can't win either way.

  3. Ive also found it frustrating,to get sum real action although the best thing I did was write an article and get it published,also contacting the local member was also a very good way of getting it dealt with.But its very difficult to get any real action,the only thing the dept really care bout is $$.Im even considered going round with a petition in the local community to press for real action.But maybe It would be good to form a residents action group through this site.

  4. I think the real problem is the anti social tenants in housing. There is such a shortage of housing in sydney that the worst tenants cannot be moved and tossing them on the street makes them a problem for others. Locking em in jail isn't the answer either as the jails are chocker block full of people. Go to your MP, find a counsellor and get him to help you to get an escalated transfer. Get a medical cert saying you are in great depression and fear. That's what I have done. This does not mean I won't be here in another 2 years due to shortages and there is no guarantee that you can find peace anywhere. As for swapping, that's russian roulette.

  5. Well here we all are, tenants who don't appear to have a voice and ... get this: SBS IS MAKING A COMEDY DUE TO GO ON AIR LATER THIS YEAR ABOUT....US! WE ARE SO FFFFF...UNNY, IT SEEMS. You can google 'housos SBS' and get some information about this show. They are worried about precious controversy and SBS has gone to media saying "everyone participating in the show is an actor" and that the show was funded through SBS's commercial business and not taxpayers subsidy...I wonder if we 'housos' can use this to our advantage (after we get well and truly mad, that is) .... I think this is the final insult.

  6. Congratulations to the lady that won her case against the Department.
    It gives me hope for the people that live in our block of 8.
    We have a woman in the building that is a menace she feed pigeons on the roof area and feeds the birds all over the district.Sydney is plagued with rats and this woman is adding to this problem. She goes out of her way to upset the neighbours. Is Homophobic bangs doors and generallty makes noises in the building at all hours of the night. The Department ignores our pleas as does the City Council.We are fortunate to live in one of the best DOH buildings in Sydney but all our complaints go into the TOO HARD BASKET. This woman recently took delivery of 10 x 25KL bags of pigeon seed. 250KL.

  7. Most phones now have cameras, i have taken to recording any incidents that are severe enough to wake/scare my children... though the problem with this is that they problem people will know who is complaining... and with the transfer list so hight how will i be safe still living as their neighbors

  8. Every time I go into doh they take it in turns in being the ceo. Where I live private residents who live in close proximity to the doh units and just about every tennant have complained about one woman and her family (sons ,daughters their partners and grand children all living in a 3 bedroom unit with dogs and cats )but nothing is done also so many cars that no one can get in or out. Then there is the loud arguing and swearing and that is among themselves.
    I think what is needed is a meeting between all state ministers and relevant departments plus selected representatives living in doh to sort out the problems and fix them.All issues need to be sorted and distinguish the difference between the selfish wingers and the ferrel element.
    Everyone deserves to live a peaceful life

  9. I came across your site looking for help. We own our home and have lovely housing commission neighbours next door and across the road (not being sarcastic), however the thugs that live next to them are really making our life a living hell. We can’t afford to sell up and move somewhere else. The kids from one of the housing commission houses next to our lovely neighbours, for the past four years we have been here, kick in our colour bond fence sometimes on a nightly basis, they also graffiti it, break into our cars, steal anything that is out the front and we are at the point of each day when we go to and from work have to dash as fast as we can from the car to our house to avoid their wrath. When we want to mow our lawn we have to wait until they are sufficiently drunk or drugged so that they are not moving so we can get it done in peace. They throw stuff over the fence at our dog and at our 4 year old. They threaten us with violence when we call the police on them for the same and last night were at our door threatening, screaming, swearing and yelling at us for over an hour. I called the police during this and it took them over 3 hours to attend and then they sent a lone woman police officer. My 4 year old wouldn’t sleep for fear that the ‘bad man’ would come back.

    We have complained to the Housing Commission about them, which is why they were aggressive last night, and will be complaining about them again today. The police have told us we need to get a personal violence order out against them which we are doing today.

    We both work full time and are doing our best to get ahead, unfortunately both of us don’t have high paying jobs and just don’t understand why we are not protected from people like this, let alone our other lovely housing commission neighbours who are elderly and disabled from a stroke. The stress is taking its toll to the point we both cannot sleep for fear of what they will do.

    If anyone has any suggestions about how we can protect ourselves legally and lobby the housing commission to have them removed I would be eternally grateful.


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