A Queensland family whose baby girl died at a rented home eight years ago have welcomed a government proposal to introduce minimum standards for rental properties in the state.
Lyn and Ken Diefenbach have been advocating for prescribed minimum standards for rental properties since their seven-week-old granddaughter Isabella died in an accident involving a rotten floorboard on a deck in 2010.
Isabella was being held by her father when the floorboard gave way and the baby fell from his arms.
The Diefenbachs say the tragedy ‘could have been avoided’ and the government including minimum standards as part of a proposed reform to the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act will prevent future accidents.
‘We want Bella’s death to count for something and we’re pleased there’s now an opportunity for this and other issues to be addressed,’ Mr Diefenbach said on Sunday.
‘What we would like is that if anything is identified in a rental property that is not safe, that the tenants are notified as well as the property owner.’
Public consultation on the government’s proposed reforms runs until November 30.
Queensland Housing Minister Mick de Brenni said more than 35,000 responses have been received in the first 24-days of the consultation period.
Opposition LNP Deputy Leader Tim Mander believes it’s important the reforms strike a balance between the rights of tenants and the needs of landlords.
‘What we’re hearing from the government at the moment seems to be very slanted towards those that are renting,’ Mr Mander said.
‘What we need to be careful of is if puts too much burden on property owners that we will have less properties to rent because it will simply become uneconomical.’