This Hospital Gave A Seven-Tweet Clapback To A Liberal MP Talking Shit About Social Housing

A healthcare organisastion has clapped back at Liberal MP Jason Falinski after he tried to sledge the Victorian government’s plan to build thousands of new social housing units across the state.

It all started on Monday morning when Falinski described the massive constriction program as: “Socialist Victorian Government spends $5.3 billion to entrench inequality.”

As expected, he was dunked on by droves of people who let him know that building social housing was the opposite of entrenching inequality. But the man didn’t stop.

Instead, he tried to argue that vulnerable people shouldn’t be given homes because what they really need is a good old job.

That’s when St Vincent’s Health – the largest Catholic not-for-profit healthcare organisation in the country – stepped in to explain that things work differently in the real world.

“Mr Falinski, the vast majority of people experiencing homelessness who use our inner city public hospitals do not have the capacity for immediate employment,” the organisation said in a series of seven tweets.

“Most are sleeping rough, or have a range of other issues, such as mental illness or alcohol and other drug dependence that preclude a job.

“After we support them with their immediate medical needs, the thing that is most crucial in their ongoing recuperation is helping them to enter long-term, social housing – this is absolutely the first step in them achieving independence.”

It makes sense that when a vulnerable person leaves the hospital, they’re in no state to be thrust into work and instead need somewhere safe to sleep.

St Vincent’s Health said that only after someone’s settled with a roof over their head, can they focus on the very specific kind of “dignity” and “security” Falinski was talking about.

“From there, if we can offer them ongoing support around their health and other issues, THEN, once they’ve managed to achieve some stability and their issues are under control, they might be in a position to be able to consider a pathway to a job,” the said.

“That takes time.”

This, the organisation explained, is the Housing First approach and it’s backed up by experts in Australia and around the world.

It’s not the kind of thing someone with no real knowledge or experience of should be talking shit about.

The Victorian housing plan will see 12,200 homes built across the state, with 1,100 of those replacing old homes and the remainder being new capacity.

It’s a great start, but it’s still short of the 300,000-odd social dwellings the organisation said would be needed to satisfy the current demand.

“Housing and homeless organisations struggle to help someone begin their path to independence because that crucial first step – accessing supported housing – just isn’t available, it’s simply not there,” the org said.

“It’s a barrier that must be overcome.”

Finally, they invited Falinski to visit the St Vincent’s Hospitals in either Melbourne or Sydney so that he could see the work they do first-hand and perhaps get a bit of a better understanding of how things work.

Falinski has not publicly replied to the tweets just yet, but there’s one fact that tops it all off.

Falinski’s seat, Mackellar, isn’t even in Victoria. It’s on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

Why he’s so upset about vulnerable Victorians getting new homes is anyone’s guess.