A Canberra community housing provider says most of its properties are run down or badly in need of repair because of funding shortages.

The independent Southside Housing Aboriginal Corporation (SHAC) rents seven houses to Indigenous people on low incomes.

The ACT Government has stepped in to fix some properties where problems range from broken fences to exposed asbestos, and is relocating some tenants.

SHAC public officer Darren Williams says the organisation relies on volunteers and its only income is from rent.

"The Federal Government should be doing something. They're the ones who neglected the organisation in the first place. They basically haven't done anything for this organisation since the abolition of ATSIC," he said.

ACT Housing Minister Shane Rattenbury says he became aware of the problems in March, and the Government is working with the corporation to improve the situation.

"Whilst they're not Housing ACT properties they were in such a state of disrepair that I organised for Housing ACT to inspect them the next day," he said.

"We undertook urgent repairs within five days to make them liveable because some of the safety issues were so severe that even though they're not our properties we couldn't let people keep living like that."

A spokesman for the federal Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs says the homes are owned by Southside Housing Aboriginal Corporation.

He says the department recently became aware of the poor condition of the properties and raised concerns with the relevant ACT Government officials.

He says rental accommodation in the ACT is subject to ACT legislation and regulation and the Commonwealth does not have the responsibility to manage, maintain or provide upkeep for the properties.

 

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