INDEPENDENT NEWS

Housing Minister On Another Planet - Mana's Alternative

Published: Wed 5 Oct 2011 10:03 AM
Housing Minister on another planet - Mana offers radical alternative
Housing Minister Phil Heatley is cementing in hardship for struggling families says Mana housing spokesperson Sue Bradford.
"In an interview this weekend Mr Heatley admitted he now considers people earning the minimum wage too wealthy to live in state housing," she says.
"I don't know what planet he lives on, but I know here in Auckland it would cost nearly all the take home pay of a person on the minimum wage to rent a house in the private sector."
"National is deliberately running down the state housing system with nothing to replace it except for very limited number of houses to be delivered by an under resourced community sector."
"At a time when thousands of people are living in substandard and inadequate accommodation like cars, sheds, garages and tents this is a disgrace."
Ms Bradford says Mana believes housing those in need must be a national priority. Key elements of Mana housing policy include:
Making it a Government obligation to ensure every individual and family is housed in secure, safe and affordable accommodation.
Developing a national housing strategy based on quality research which identifies true levels of homelessness and substandard living arrangements.
Building 20,000 new state houses in the next two years.
Introducing a 'warrant of fitness' for all rental housing, to ensure basic standards are maintained for all tenants.
Establishing a major papakainga housing programme which works to overcome the many barriers which Maori face when seeking to build on their own land.
"Mana knows that housing is critical to the wellbeing of children and adults alike,' says Ms Bradford.
"With many people struggling to afford even minimally adequate housing, we need a radical programme that actually builds houses, not the withdrawal from state responsibility offered by National."
Click here for a copy of our full policy (pdf).

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