Housing should not depend on charity – but this is an emergency

Written By: - Date published: 8:15 am, May 30th, 2016 - 43 comments
Categories: accountability, housing, national - Tags: , , ,

John Key’s glib advice to the homeless is to go and see WINZ. This is a WINZ that (while no doubt containing caring individuals, as an institution) has been deliberately set up to be as slow, difficult and unpleasant to access as possible, and will likely just load you up with impossible debt for an overpriced motel. Useless.

Putting the government to shame, Te Puea Marae in Mangere has stepped up, and so has the community around them:

Help for homeless pours in at marae

Te Puea Marae in Mangere has established a support programme, alongside social agencies, to help those sleeping in cars and garages and on the street. Since the programme started just last week, the marae has had a lot of support from an array of services.

Hurimoana Dennis, who chairs the marae board, said the support had been overwhelming, but work still needed to be done. “We’re looking quite wide and far in terms of what accommodation looks like. For a lot of people it looks like a house, but actually for the winter period, for this kaupapa perhaps, it could look like some spare bedrooms. “We’re calling on universities, colleges and others – if you’ ve got spare dormitories and hostels available.”

He said the marae was still looking for volunteers to help with cooking kai and sorting out logistics with donations, and for qualified social workers who could do assessments. Mr Dennis said a volunteer roster would start next week, and the marae was also calling for help with setting up an 0800 number. He said currently they were using their own phones and could not keep up with the demand.

“But through winter time we think people can’t be living in cars and under bridges and carports, this is New Zealand 2016, I mean, come on.”

The programme will welcome and support whānau who have nowhere to live during the winter months. The marae is open for donations and support from 8am to 7pm. Their Facebook page has up-to-date information about what is happening at the marae and the services and support they are after.

Bravo to Te Puea Marae and their supporters – you are doing what needs to be done – and you are putting the government to shame.

Having said that I do have a reservation. Housing the homeless is the job of the state, a duty for any society that calls itself ethical. In practice when the state fails, as it is obviously failing in NZ, charitable efforts like this relieve suffering. But they also relieve pressure on the government, who can continue to do too little in the hopes that charity will pick up the slack.

Ok that’s a pretty abstract concern in the face of homeless, cold families. So I say again, bravo and thanks to Te Puea Marae for stepping up.

43 comments on “Housing should not depend on charity – but this is an emergency”

  1. Sabine 1

    ahh the conservative idea that the poor should go to charities for hand outs.

    mission accomplished. Grover Northquist and his idea of creating a government so small that it can be drowned in a bath is coming to fruition. Cause only MP’s and their cronies need government to prosper. 🙂

    • greywarshark 1.1

      Yes government cronies like to fund honest government. That is one that paves the way for them to get whatever they asked Santa for and then slipped an IOU in a plain brown wrapper into his santa bag. I guess they don’t sit on Santa’s knee and ask but all sit at a round table with agendas to work through followed by a few bevvies for self congratulation at reaching consensus.

      And how wonderful to have a never-ending flow of money that has to be paid from The People to whoever is lording it over them. What more could you want. The people are now subsidising government to act for its own benefit, not theirs, and they go on feeding it like a cuckoo that has rolled out the greywarbler’s eggs and swallows all the food still given by the dedicated, nurturing little birds.
      edited

    • Chris 1.2

      Yes, plays into neo-liberal agenda. Government’s already funding charities to provide core services. IHC has become a general housing provider for low income people for fuck’s sake!! Things are way out of control. Expect more. The pressure’s getting so high on government expect more stupid responses like shipping the poor out of cities, leasing motels – you name it Brainless Bennett and her idiot mates will do it. Bring out the popcorn.

  2. ianmac 2

    In an interview they said they had asked Work and Income for financial support but this was refused. You see that anything outside the strict cumbersome “rules” is rejected by W&I.

    • Sabine 2.1

      Winz is supposed to reject any and all government hand outs to undeserving people.
      Now if these guys would be people that could give our current National led government a big ‘donation’ for ‘services rendered’ that would be somehting else….they of course would be very deserving of Government Handouts.
      Its just the poor, the working poor, the soon to be working poor that are not to get anything, cause reasons.

  3. vto 3

    What on earth do people do who have no money, food or shelter and Winz says “no” to?????

    What do they do?

    How do they eat?

    How do they keep warm at night?

    • Sabine 3.1

      they don’t eat.
      they try to find a public toilet for a wash and some toilet paper. (yes, they may roll a bit of – just in case)
      they don’t stay warm at night, they try to find something sheltered from wind and rain, but staying warm in most cases is not going to happen, unless they may still have a car to stay in – and even that at around 3 in the mornings it gets cold. Very cold.

      Next morning maybe they go to a food bank, or a soup kitchen or maybe they arrive at a friends for a coffee…..or they go to queenstreet and hope to beg for some money, and maybe with that money they buy a bit of food and some weed. smoking a bit of weed or drinking some cheap piss will make the misery a bit easier this coming up night.
      Maybe they have survival sex with some random dude so they get to stay indoors for a night – that applies to young ones and affects all genders.
      Maybe they break into some empty building. Maybe they commit a petty crime to get locked up.

      • vto 3.1.1

        And the village chief lets this happen in his village??

        • Sabine 3.1.1.1

          yes.

          • vto 3.1.1.1.1

            Lordy, what a poorly chief !

            What about the rest of the villagers? Do they just turn a blind eye? Are they in thrall to the chief? Or some other hook? Do they not see that the village will soon fail with that kind of setup?

            • Sabine 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Well it depends, are you making money of homeless people? Then you might consider the Chief to be an outstanding type of guy.

              As for the villagers?
              there are those that make money of homeless people – see above
              there are those that want to be like the chief – so they will try to be like the chief
              there are those that are too busy being like the chief – so they don’t see that the chief is a fraud until to late or they themselves loose out and fall into the category of bludger
              then there are those that against against the chief, and don’t want to be like the chief – they are laughed out and at, cause why support bludger
              then there are those that are against the chief, are afraid of the chief, and hope to god and dog that they too will not be made homeless by someone to enrich the chief, knowing full well that homelessness is closer then homeowner ship.

              that should sum up Auckland and any other place on this planet where people are homeless among empty houses and buildings.

    • Wensleydale 3.2

      They huddle in a shop doorway on Queen Street, until the police move them along because some Parnell socialite has complained about beggars soiling their pristine streets with their grubby, lice-ridden carcasses, and it’s really lowering the tone of the neighbourhood.

      Auckland — The Super City (unless you’re poor and homeless, in which case you can crawl into a hole and die)

  4. Your Average Voter 4

    I applaud everyone involved in this initiative. Communities helping themselves is always great to see.
    But I would have thought that the adult people they are helping (the homeless) would be the volunteers to help with the cooking, cleaning, washing and maintenance of the marae. I would have also thought that would apply to some of the older children to help install a sense of family, communal living and community as well as self reliance. Self help if you like.
    Perhaps the working homeless and those on a Benefit could also help out financially as well giving what would be considered an affordable rent or board to the marae so they don’t have to carry the financial burden.

    • The New Student 4.1

      Yes what you described is marae living. Everyone chips in and I can’t imagine that they wouldn’t. But you still need people who can co-ordinate and lead these tasks (the aunties usually). You can’t just throw someone into the kitchen and tell them to come up with dinner for 50 people.

      • Your Average Voter 4.1.1

        Thanks for that. Good to know. I thought that would be the case.

        It’s a pity that that side of things is not expressed in the article. It would help show things in a more positive light instead of all the negativity that surrounds these social issues on both sides of the debate.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      Communities helping themselves is always great to see.

      Yeah, that’s why we invented government and taxes.

  5. The New Student 5

    Finally, the community spirit has fully awakened. Charity does not require a Government mandate. Too often the burden falls on the few bleeding hearts while the rest of society carries on its blind merry way. Faith in humanity partly restored.

    • Richardrawshark 5.1

      Finally community spirit …

      Listen mate, some of us older ones remember a time when we all chipped in, at school at farms, we always banded together.

      Since the 70’s that’s changed? In fact since the 70’s NZ has completely changed I can’t even recognize it.

      No community group should have to pick up the pieces of an ideology driven disaster on NZ’s social housing policy.

      • Your Average Voter 5.1.1

        I would disagree.
        School fairs, school boards of trustees, church groups, welfare leagues, Maori wardens, marae’ she, fund raisers of every description, student armies, etc, etc. all charitable work carried out by volunteers that muck in and help out. Often with little thanks or recognition.

        The community response to the Christchurch earthquake was amazing.

        Sometimes we buy into the doom and gloom too much and can’t see the good right under our own noses.

        • weka 5.1.1.1

          Yeah we had that conversation yesterday and the general consensus was that Key’s govt is the equivalent of a big earthquake in terms of damage done. The difference is that the quakes are unavoidable. Whatever the fuck our govt is, you can’t say there wasn’t a choice.

          • Your Average Voter 5.1.1.1.1

            This housing/homeless problem has been around for a very long time. Successive governments both red and blue have turned a blind eye to it. And here we are.

            I’m sure that the Nats would love nothing better than to fix it immediately. But the reality is they can’t. Under a Labour/Green government the problem will still exist. No one has the magic wand. It’s taken generations to get to this and it’s going to take generations to get out of it. If ever!!

            The whole problem is incredibly complex. Lack of houses is just the tip of the iceberg and the most visible problem. Other issues such as mental illness, unaffordable family sizes, drug and alcohol addiction, educational aspirations, intergenerational dysfunctional families, low self esteem, illiteracy, lack of unskilled jobs, broken communities, etc, etc.

            Until these issues are addressed we will always have the same problems regardless of the government of the day.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1.1.1

              The whole problem is incredibly complex. Lack of houses is just the tip of the iceberg and the most visible problem. Other issues such as mental illness, unaffordable family sizes, drug and alcohol addiction, educational aspirations, intergenerational dysfunctional families, low self esteem, illiteracy, lack of unskilled jobs, broken communities, etc, etc.

              No wonder you’ve got no clue how to fix the problem: you can’t even acknowledge the clueless economic policies at its heart. That and the utter gutter levels of competence and compassion displayed by National Party dupes.

              Why? It’s incredibly complex, and boils down to two things: you’re stupid and greedy.

            • weka 5.1.1.1.1.2

              “The whole problem is incredibly complex. Lack of houses is just the tip of the iceberg and the most visible problem. Other issues such as mental illness, unaffordable family sizes, drug and alcohol addiction, educational aspirations, intergenerational dysfunctional families, low self esteem, illiteracy, lack of unskilled jobs, broken communities, etc, etc.

              Until these issues are addressed we will always have the same problems regardless of the government of the day.”

              Yeah, nah. None of that matters when you simply don’t have enough houses available (note, we have enough houses in NZ to house everyone). Same thing with unemployment. It’s cruel to talk about self-esteem and life choices when we know that the govt needs there to be a certain level of unemployment to run the economy in a neoliberal fashion.

              We have lots of choices at this point as a nation, including ones that solve homelessness reasonably quickly. Not overnight, but I think Te Puea Marae just demonstrated how fast we could take people in if we really wanted to. Everything else is just an excuse.

              • Sacha

                Not tricky for any govt that cares – and yes, the last two have turned a blind eye.

                1) Build. Houses. Now.
                2) Regulate to fix the financial/tax settings which encourage people to put money into housing rather than productive business.
                3) Reassure existing home-owners that your measures will slowly deflate the bubble they’ve bought into/are caught up in.

                Get on with it.

            • Richardrawshark 5.1.1.1.1.3

              “This housing/homeless problem has been around for a very long time. Successive governments both red and blue have turned a blind eye to it. And here we are.”

              Negative, I was a homeless person in my late and early 20’s yes we had a homeless problem but do not think it was anything at all like what’s happening now. I find that reply offensive and a denial approach to a problem.

              Apart from mental health and addiction and home/domestic abuse we now have a massive layer added of people who cannot afford a place or find one with money. We have workers on minimum wages, and we don’t have the rooms or homes.

              I can absolutely assure you that almost all of the homelessness in the past, homes were available but those homeless turned them down or to ill with addictions or mental health issues to look. Others just liked the camaraderie.

              Next you’ll be saying it’s the councils fault.

  6. Your Average Voter 6

    You’re right OAB, I have no idea how to fix the problem. It’s way above my pay grade. 😀
    Insulting me by saying I’m stupid and greedy won’t fix it either. You know nothing about me so please leave out the insults as they are meaningless and a bit silly.

    Yes, economic policies play their part both good and bad. It’s all part of the mix. As I said, this all started a very long time ago and is now landed at the feet of a Nat government. But they are not solely to blame. Previous governments of the whole colour spectrum have created it.

    One thing I have learnt in life is that you cannot fix a problem without first identifying what the real problem is. They are often multi layered and where people are involved become instantly complex.

    Shaking your fists at politicians doesn’t the really solve the problem either. But it can be therapeutic some days 😀

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1

      You listed a litany of symptoms of poverty then pretended they cause poverty. We know what the problem is. One of the ways to deny it is to pretend that we need to study it more closely before we can act.

      I’ve had a gutsful of compassionless bullshit of that flavour. The Left has proposed a raft of policies to address the issue. If this shit government is too vile and incompetent to implement them then they should get out of the way.

      Right wing trash have opposed everything from emancipation to universal suffrage, from the welfare state to human rights. You employ their rhetoric. Why is that?

      • Tom 6.1.1

        The more harm, the closer to the end -If humans don’t exist, they don’t suffer.

        Men would shoot their horses before leaving Europe at the end of WW2 – because they were to suffer.

        I understand that.

      • Your Average Voter 6.1.2

        I’m not sure what “their rhetoric” is. I have my own thoughts and opinions.

        And I agree with you. We have libraries full of studies on these matters and the last thing we need is yet more studies. It is action that is required.

        I’m not pretending the issues I outlined cause poverty……….they do cause poverty. They aren’t the only causes by a long shot.

        Mental health issues (not all) can cause poverty and homelessness. Something I have had personal experience of with a family member.

        Drug and alcohol addiction can cause poverty and homelessness. Something I have witnessed happening to a couple of people I have known and worked with.

        Unaffordable family sizes can cause poverty and lead to homelessness. If you are on a benefit or low wages with 6 kids then you will be financially poor. Having adult children of my own I know just how much money it takes to raise and look after them. It is a relentless grind on the finances.

        Lack of self esteem, dysfunctional families, etc, etc. all can cause intergenerational poverty and homelessness. If people drag their kids up and give them negative role modelling then how do we expect them to become functional adults.

        And yes, bad government policies can also cause poverty. Something all governments have done.

        • weka 6.1.2.1

          “Mental health issues (not all) can cause poverty and homelessness. Something I have had personal experience of with a family member.”

          Usually only if the person with the mental health issues lives in a society that doesn’t look after vulnerable people.

          Benefit rates and policies are a really easy way to understand this. At the moment there are whole lot of people how can’t work full time or at all due to mental health issues. They are forced to live on a rate that is deliberately set below what is liveable, and too many of them are on Job Seeker instead of Supported Living Payment.

          Job Seeker means they are subject to all sorts of stresses and triggers for decline in their health instead of being on SLP where they can then focus on the care that they need to stay more healthy. That one thing alone is a huge driver of mental health problems in NZ and it is completely and utterly caused by government policy.

          The fact that they don’t have enough to live on is another big factor, and is also just out and out mismanagement from the govt.

          I’m not suggesting that all those people would get better with more money. I’m saying that without adequate money and support they’re being pushed into crisis and ill health.

        • b waghorn 6.1.2.2

          “It is action that is required.”

          The first action should be is for dumb as fuck right wingers to comprehend that one or two houses is enough , a simple efficient car is all you need,
          Having millions hidden here and there and doing every thing possible to avoid tax makes things worse.
          Their is no need for anyone on this planet to earn more than $200 k a year and that money is just the oil that should lubricate society.

          People that are struggling more than likely will have low self esteem, people with low self esteem make poor decisions.

          Making sure that kids get the best education possible would make the biggest difference to a society long term.

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.2.2.1

            That’s not the economic system we live in. The banks have generated a huge flood of money, and that money constantly seeks investment assets from which to get a good return on investment.

          • dave 6.1.2.2.2

            b waghorn +100 i would add get rid of this government then take back every single cent these corrupt bastards stole including the assets and bankrupt the speculator’s

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.2.3

          I don’t suppose there’s any chance of you paying attention to what I said a second time when you failed the first, and here goes anyway: you are confusing the symptoms of poverty and inequality with the causes. By an amazing “coincidence”, “your” “opinions” coincide precisely with self-aggrandising right wing hate speech. Shame on you.

          You don’t agree with me: you have to demonstrate that you understand what I’m saying first.

          • Your Average Voter 6.1.2.3.1

            Weka…….in our case it wasn’t an uncaring society or government policy. It was the hubris of health professionals not listening to the family. Unfortunately a story we hear to often these days. But it had a good outcome. It just took a long time and quite a bit of grief to reach it.

            B wag horn….. I agree with you 100% about education. That really is the key.

            OAB……I don’t have to demonstrate anything to you. I heard and understood you the first time and gave my answer accordingly. Perhaps it is you that doesn’t understand my answers.

            Symptom or cause? A bit like the chicken and the egg. Which comes first? I suspect a bit of both.

            So my opinions are the same as self aggrandising right wing hate speech…….good grief. 🙄

            • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.2.3.1.1

              In order to agree with me you first have to understand what I’m saying. I don’t expect you to do that any time soon.

              Your “answers” don’t answer anything, they simply demonstrate that you are either ignorant or prejudiced, and most likely, both: this isn’t a “chicken & egg” situation. To illustrate the point, twice as many people are defined as unemployed now than in 2007, and the number of long-term unemployed has mushroomed. “Your” “opinions” would have us believe that’s because they suddenly decided to have far too many children, or got into drugs, or developed mental health issues.

              Meanwhile, on Earth, the causes of, and solutions to, poverty and inequality, are well understood paths well trodden by everyone other than right wing dupes. You parrot the hate speech – fatuous drivel you rote-learned: poverty comes from bad choices, inherited wealth comes from good choices. It’s feeble, and given the level of what Treasury charmingly terms “morbidity with a social gradient”, utterly inexcusable.

              There is no excuse for you any more. Get out of the way.

  7. BaBa 7

    I seem to remember stories of woefully resourced settlers kept from starvation by local Maori who then, within a few years, were stripped of their land and means of support for their effort.The irony drips but yeah Bravo to this Marae and all the struggling support networks out there on the ground doing what they can to mop up the right wing bankster induced mess.

  8. Richardrawshark 8

    Why is everyone commenting about mental health etc homelessness. Which has always been an issue, and not addressing the reason for todays massive explosion of people living rough who work. Those who just cannot find affordable accommodation.

    That the issue of affordability and availability is probably more likely due to the mass influx of people heading to Auckland from regions for work promoted by the government with a 3k subsidy whilst importing 64000 migrants a year at the same time. Oh and not controlling the housing market as well.

    Come on people focus on the problem. Your appearing to get side tracked IMHO.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      There’s no achievable building programme which can provide affordable accommodation to 1/3 of NZ’s population squeezed inside 0.3% of its land area.

      The average income earner is on $60K pa in Auckland. A large majority of workers in Auckland make less than that.

      How are you going to provide affordable housing for these people which isn’t a 55m2 Hong Kong style apartment?

      • Craig H 8.1.1

        Build it and rent it at 25% income, or sell it at a loss with the government having the first right of purchase at the original purchase price.

      • Ch-ch Chiquita 8.1.2

        CV – a serious question if you don’t mind answering – on RNZ John Key said the problem in Auckland is that cost of land is very high saying a section that cost $150k in Christchurch will be $450k in Auckland (never mind you will struggle to find a section in Christchurch that cost $150k that will not require massive investment in strengthening in order to build a stable house). Why can’t the crown decide to give away with this whole buying a section thing, declare all land belong to the crown and if you want to build a house you get a 99 year lease on the section. It will allow building affordable houses, people will invest in upgrading and maintaining the houses as otherwise they will not have any value when you want to sell the house.

  9. Venezia 9

    Tim Watkins article on the Nat’s failure on housing is refreshing to see. They haven’t a clue because housing low income people does not fit their neoliberal agenda. Selling off state houses, claiming to be building lots of new “affordable” homes ( when in fact they have dragged their feet for too long), identifying special housing areas so developers can fast track consents, then sit on the land until they can make a greater profit – that’s the neoliberal way. This crisis won’t go away. And it is not just in Auckland. Te Puea marae has put the government to shame. Now they need to cough up for the costs to the marae, as well as acting promptly to increase housing for people in need. Do something extraordinary. Show some leadership for a change.

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    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    4 days ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    4 days ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    5 days ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    5 days ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    5 days ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    5 days ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    5 days ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    1 week ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    1 week ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    1 week ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
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    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter
    https://mailchi.mp/7d9133add053/closing-the-gap-october-2019-newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
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    2 weeks ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
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