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Market rents mean misery for the poor

9 August 2005

Market rents mean misery for the poor

Under the cynical rubric of “equity” National is planning to drive tens of thousands of the poorest people in New Zealand deeper into poverty and misery by re-introducing the 1991 Ruth Richardson policy of “market rents”, says Alliance Housing Spokesperson, Len Richards.

“Labour’s Steve Maharey rightly points out that a return to market rents will mean many people will be more than $50 a week worse off ,” says Mr Richards. “Pushed by its coalition partner, the Alliance, Labour re-introduced income related rents early in its first term of government after being elected in 1999. The loss of this significant government intervention in the housing market will be a huge blow.”

Under the pretence of creating equity between private and public housing supply, National will throw renters to the property owning dogs if they are elected. Historically the market has failed to provide adequate and affordable housing for New Zealanders.

“We saw the return of diseases that are caused by poor housing, like TB and meningitis, under the last National government and we will see more misery and disease under Brash,” says Mr Richards.

The Alliance would push for a greatly expanded programme of State House building. Labour’s plans for 3288 new state houses in the next four years is woefully inadequate.

“But National cannot be allowed back into power to undo the good work that has been done by the government on housing.”

ENDS

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