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Belated recognition of Pacific Is. housing crisis

Labour 2000 web site
Tuariki Delamere has belatedly woken up to the severe housing problems facing Pacific people in New Zealand, Labour Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Taito Phillip Field said.

"The housing crisis, with its severe health and poverty consequences, has long been recognised by Labour and long denied by the Government. The crisis is a direct result of National's introduction of market rents for state housing. That policy has had a disastrous impact on low-income New Zealanders.

"Pacific Island people are, in the Minister's own words, "at the bottom of the heap."

"As the MP for Mangere, I am dismayed and appalled by South Auckland's health statistics," Mr Field said. "The health status of low-income families, in particular the poor health of children in South Auckland, is directly linked to the Government's housing policy, which has forced 2 and 3 families to cram into one house. National MP Arthur Anae has claimed Pacific Island people choose to live in over-crowded conditions. What nonsense. They are caught in a poverty trap; a trap set by an uncaring Government.

"The need identified in the scoping report for appropriate-sized housing for larger families is already part of Labour policy. Labour in Government is committed to working with Pacific Island communities to establish pilot programmes to meet their needs, including the design of appropriately sized housing stock.

"The National-led Government that Mr Delamere helps to prop up has done nothing to address such issues. It has always denied a link between its housing policy, poverty and poor health. The evidence provided in this report shows once again how pathetic that denial is."


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