From ABC, April 19, 2007
VILLAGE LIFE RETIREMENT HOMES TO STAY OPEN
The company that owns 10 retirement villages which were facing closure has announced it has secured an agreement to keep them open.
About 400 Village Life residents from villages in New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia were facing eviction because a lease on the centres had been terminated.
The MFS Diversified Group, which owns the sites, says the SCV Group Limited has agreed to run the 10 affected Village Life retirement centres.
The managing director of MFS, Craig White, says the agreement means the residents will be able to stay in their homes.
New South Wales Fair Trading Minister Linda Burney says the state's commissioner for fair trading will establish a task force to examine the agreement and review the leases to make sure the residents rights have been protected.
"We'll be very definitely examining what the contractual arrangements are with the new provider and very closely looking at what the tenancy agreements are," she said.
"We will also very much be looking at this as a lesson for us to take forward to make sure that we don't find that the older people are kept up night after night worrying about where they are going to be sleeping in five weeks time."
The federal Member for the central west NSW seat of Calare, Peter Andren, says the announcement is great news for Village Life residents who were fraught with concern about the future.
"It's good that a leading operator of community accommodation has been brought in by MFS," he said.
"But at the end of the day, we still need legislation at both state and federal level that covers these sorts of accommodation to absolutely ensure this doesn't happen again."