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Boarding House Evictions

Boarding House Evictions

The New Zealand Coalition to End Homelessness (NZCEH) is committed to ending homelessness by 2020. The group, who met in Wellington yesterday, are concerned to hear about the actions of some boarding houses in the capital city. Chairperson Clare Aspinall said “the eviction of boarding room residence with such short notice demonstrates the lack of rights which the more vulnerable members of our society have. Such actions cause insecurity, transience, and perpetuate the cycle of homelessness”.

“It is excellent that the Government has initiated the Residential Tenancies Act Amendment Bill” says Ms Aspinall “ this is one of the key recommendations made in our 2009 report ‘Homelessness in Aotearoa: Issues and Recommendations’, released at its Conference in March 2009.”

“The Bill is a step in the right direction but more needs to be done to offer long term, secure, affordable housing and support to those experiencing and facing homelessness” says Ms Aspinall. The NZCEH is concerned that the Bill does not protect people renting rooms in boarding houses who can still be evicted without reason in 28 days, as opposed to the 90 days all other tenants are granted. “

“We are particularly concerned about the impact of large events like the 2011 Rugby World Cup on those in temporary or insecure accommodation” says Ms Aspinall. “Even if boarding houses come under the residential tenancies Act as proposed, landlords who make good money from renting to boarding room residents ($200-$250 per week per room) can legally evict people without reason and charge much higher rents for a weekend or week during such events”

“We should all be able to enjoy major events but not at the expense of those who are already socially excluded and we invite the government, local council and landlords to act now and work with the NZCEH to ensure such events are truly inclusive”


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