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Horror And Disgust Over Cherry Remarks

6 March 2001

Members of the Neighbourhood Week Committee, set up to foster good neighbourhood relationships, have expressed horror and disgust over remarks by Environment Canterbury member, Neil Cherry.

Dr Cherry said on Monday that Christchurch residents should be encouraged to "dob in" new neighbours who used solid-fuel burners. But members of the joint Christchurch City Council's Community Board committee said today that Dr Cherry's remarks ran counter to everything the committee tried to achieve.

Its deputy chairman, Dennis Hills, said members had been horrified at the remarks and said they were aghast and disgusted by them.

"This concept of dobbing in a neighbour is completely opposed to what we are to trying to do in Christchurch.

"We are working to bring neighbourhoods together. We are trying to work with partnerships at the ground floor and Dr Cherry's remarks run counter to all that," Mr. Hills said.

The committee held a Neighbourhood Week each year and the idea was that neighbours spoke to and support one another all year round - not the opposite as suggested by Dr Cherry, he said.

"Here we have a civic leader who comes along and makes an absolutely ridiculous statement."

"We are trying get Christchurch to be the most caring community in the country where neighbours talk and support each other. We hope relationships will last more than Neighbourhood Week of course. Dr Cherry, with his irresponsible statement, could well destroy our work of the past two years," Mr. Hills said.

Most people had traditional values and "I do not think they will pay any attention to Dr Cherry's ideas."

Further information: Dennis Hills, deputy-chairman, Neighbourhood Week Committee: 025 242 7893 or 358 6199.

Christchurch City Council http://www.ccc.govt.nz

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