Dunedin South Labour MP Clare Curran is urging people to get behind a plea that has gone out today for donations to help uninsured residents who lost their homes and possessions in last week’s floods.
“The worst affected suburbs are some of New Zealand’s most densely populated and disadvantaged areas. The elderly, people with disabilities and families with young children on low incomes are disproportionately affected by the extreme flood event.
“Many are not insured and in private rental accommodation. They are struggling to pay their power and food bills, let alone insurance premiums.
“A week after the floods some people are still living in their flood-affected homes because they have nowhere to go.
“They need assistance with furniture and white wear, clothing, bedding and other essentials, along with temporary accommodation.
“With winter having a long way to go we can’t leave people to fend for themselves in unsafe and miserable conditions.
“Much of Dunedin’s housing is already in poor shape with inadequate insulation, heating and ventilation. The floods have seriously affected the state of our housing with more than 1000 needing carpets to be ripped up or sterilised. Many homes also have sodden floorboards and walls which need to be removed or replaced.
“The Coroner this week found that a cold leaky state house contributed to the death of a south Auckland toddler. Problems with cold, damp and mouldy private rental and social housing in Dunedin are well documented. Let’s make sure this flood disaster does not turn into an ongoing health disaster.
“I am urging people to dig into their pockets to help in any way they can.”