Poverty linked to outer suburbs

Building affordable housing in wealthier Perth central suburbs with good public transport, instead of in outlying areas where land is cheaper, could help tackle entrenched poverty, a report has suggested.

The Committee for Perth report found that poor access to employment and education opportunities because of geography could exacerbate economic stress for low-income households.

Its conclusions were backed by Shelter WA executive officer Chantal Roberts.

"In some cases, housing costs (in outlying suburbs) are lower than in inner and middle-ring suburbs, however the additional transportation costs and inaccessibility to jobs and services increase the overall cost of living," she said.

The report analysed "economic stress", which it found fell in inner-metropolitan areas and rose in outer areas.

Report author University of WA assistant professor Kirsten Martinus suggested the transfer of stress could be linked to gentrification, which put pressure on low-income families to absorb higher costs to stay or be pushed out to lower-cost housing areas.

The West Australian

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