Griffith could be among regional centres in the MIA chosen to feature in the third season of the SBS program Struggle Street.
The show’s producers Lune Media are currently requesting assistance from community organisations across the Riverina for casting.
The documentary series explores issues of drug addiction, under employment and the lack of available housing facing a diverse cast of people living in Australia.
Major Lyn Cathcart at the Salvation Army Griffith corps said if the show was to be based in Griffith the most appropriate issue would be the problem of low housing availability leading to homelessness.
Major Cathcart said this year the Salvos’ drop-in centre on Anzac Street has provided crisis accommodation to 24 people.
Each staying for between one night and six months, with three people currently residing in the centre and another three residing in the adjoining crisis unit.
The current average price for rental in Griffith is $350 a week.
“Between January and now we’ve seen about 1320 (homeless) at the service across the whole western Murrumbidgee,” Linking Communities Network CEO Yvonne Wilson said.
“It would be approximately 880 in Griffith since the beginning of 2018, our office in Yambil Street is always very busy, women come all hours of the night and ring the doorbell.”
Having received funding from the Department of Housing to build an additional two crisis housing units, Mrs Wilson said Linking Communities received advice and encouragement from Griffith City Council and the Member for Murray to draw up plans to for a proposal for a new $8 million complex.
Mrs Wilson said if successful in receiving a grant from the NSW government the new complex would aim at building 18 to 24 units for unemployment housing ideally at a vacant lot on Kookora Street.
Mayor John Dal Broi said that if Struggle Street was to come to the city he and council would likely use the opportunity to promote their concept for a National Housing Strategy which was pitched by the council to the local government annual conference this month.
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