Healthy Homes Bill passes first reading

Some of New Zealand’s most vulnerable children and families are on their way towards safer living conditions with the passing of the first reading of the Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill in Parliament last night, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. 

“I am thrilled that my bill passed with the support of the Green Party, New Zealand First, the Maori Party and United Future. We have united in our belief that landlords must provide decent insulation and heating in the houses they rent to Kiwis.

“Other voices such as the Children’s Commissioner, Child Poverty Action Group, many newspaper editorials and commentators have also lent their weight to the need for a law which should prevent the 42,000 child hospital admissions we now have each year due to illnesses caused by cold, damp homes. 

“Most landlords already do the right thing and rent out homes that are fit for purpose. This bill is for slum landlords – those who are happy to be paid for faulty and dangerous homes. 

“The bill will now go to Select Committee where we will address concerns Peter Dunne has indicated he may have around affordability. What would be even more pleasing is if the National Party would work with us on legislation that every MP in Parliament could support. 

“Damp, cold, mouldy homes that make kids and families sick have no place in New Zealand in 2016. We have taken the first, important step towards ending them forever,” Andrew Little says.