Environmental Health and Building Consultant
- Associate Diploma Health and Building Surveying Sydney TAFE 1983
- Bachelor of Applied Science, University of Western Sydney, 1994
- Graduate Diploma Management, University of South Australia, 2002
What do you bring to the HH work?
After nearly three decades of being involved in environmental and public health and building I bring to this work an understanding of the systemic relationship between the environment including housing and health of individuals. The broader environment and housing we live in must support our desire for a healthy life.
What have you learned from being involved in the work?
To be patient. Progress can appear incredibly slow. To remain optimistic and positive. More practically houses must achieve a baseline level of function of health hardware and be maintained at this level to help in addressing chronic and acute illnesses in Indigenous communities. Housing for Health provides an ongoing model to work towards this goal. From a Public Health perspective it is obvious to me that government needs to ensure that the day to day priorities of householders, for example, unsafe electrics, failing septic tanks, blocked drains, broken toilets, leaking water pipes, faulty wood heaters etc must be addressed before, like all of us we are able and ready to absorb other health messages.
In an ideal world what directions, ideas, results would you like to see HH and the Housing for Health work become or achieve?
This focus of effort in repairs based on life threatening issues and the nine healthy living practices which is easily grasped by community members and their strong involvement at all stages of a project creates a ‘bridge of goodwill’ to the community. I would like to see HH get more involved to promoting the use of this “bridge” to encourage Government to see FHBH as an integral step in delivering Housing and Health related programs to communities. To encourage Government Housing Authorities to look past the “Asset” i.e. house, and focus on people and the process for delivering programs.
Housing for Health is a cross over program between Housing and Health but at the moment it is judged against housing programs (10-20% Management Costs) instead of Health (30-40% Management Costs). HH needs to take the time to explain this to government.
To see HH further its research into areas of need beyond the house, components and hardware while at the same time commercialising research products through some form of “Social Capitalism” program with Corporate Australia.
Finally to develop the financial modelling of repair costs to houses based on survey data to allow better forecasting by Government of what changes in house function rates will cost. The Budget Tool is very crude and needs refinement/development.