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Public support keeps Healthy Homes Bill on track

The strong call from the public for warm, dry, healthy rentals has helped the Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill to pass its second reading, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.

It is believed to be the first time in New Zealand history that a Leader of the Opposition has succeeded in getting a Member’s Bill past second reading.

“I am thrilled that my Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill has passed its second reading. We are one step closer to fewer kids getting sick and warm, dry, healthy homes for all renters.

“I’ve been overwhelmed by the support for my plan to make rentals warm, dry, and healthy from medical professionals, from tenants, and from Kiwis who just want a fresh approach to fixing the housing crisis.

“With 110,000 children living in homes that suffer major dampness and mould issues, no one can honestly claim the problem has been fixed. It’s time to lift the standard of rental accommodation to a safe, healthy standard. We don’t allow a butcher to sell rotten meat, or a car dealer to sell an unsafe vehicle – renting property should carry the same responsibility of care.

“Improving the quality of our rentals is going to keep people healthy and save lives. I’m glad that message has been heard by most of Parliament. I look forward to the Bill’s committee stage and working with other parties to make further improvements to it.

“It is disappointing that National is still kicking and screaming and fighting against this. 30,000 New Zealanders signed an open letter calling on National to drop its reactionary opposition and join with the rest of Parliament in passing this much-needed law. They have the opportunity to get themselves on the right side of history and back healthy homes through its remaining stages,” says Andrew Little.