Citizens Advice Bureaux have a proud history of giving advice and assistance to people. The first CAB was opened in Ponsonby in 1970. Since then many different offices have been opened and hundreds of thousands of people have been helped.
One thing they do not give help with is providing social housing. But this Government seems to think that they should. Because as reported on Radio New Zealand this morning desperate families have been referred to them by Housing New Zealand.
CAB chief executive Kerry Dalton reported that this year over 3,000 enquiries about emergency housing had been received, compared to 1,500 five years ago. From the article:
We’re seeing people who have been to Work and Income, Housing New Zealand, the Ministry of Social Development seeking assistance.
“Sometimes they’re the highest priority on the social housing register, which means that they’re assessed as needing a house now but they have been referred to us without being helped into alternative accommodation while they’re waiting,” she said.
She was hopeful the government would step up and intervene.
“I really believe that if there’s a will this can be addressed tomorrow.
“It’s a matter of the Ministry of Social Development and the government committing to making sure that when people come to them…they can get alternative accommodation, because the emergency accommodation just isn’t there.”
The solution is simple, the state needs to provide more social housing. And it needs to understand why the numbers of homelessness are growing.