Labour's housing reform agenda

This blog post was originally published on The Standard, here.

The Labour Party’s centenary is a great time to be talking about housing because housing plays a starring role in our party’s proud history.

Housing is never far from the action when Labour is in Government. When National is in power, housing problems inevitably start to pile up.

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Of tertiary agents, rorts and Ministerial spin

Trouble within the tertiary education sector continues to brew despite Minister Steven Joyce's attempts to push allegations of corruption or malpractice under the rug.

Potential mismanagement and fraud appear to be rife among private training establishments (PTEs) and the Minister continues to turn a blind eye.  

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Speech to the Industry Training Federation

Tēnā Koutou Katoa

Thank you Jenny for the introduction. Jenny is one of our newest MPs, but she is already emerging as a star performer. We are very proud to have her in caucus.

Thank you all for inviting me to speak today.

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Transforming Careers Advice

The Issue

There are 87,200 young New Zealanders not in employment, education or training. New Zealand has one of the worst rates of student retention of any developed country. McKinsey and Company international research has found once young people are in the job market, just 45% feel they made the right decisions about their study. Only 42% of employers thought young people were coming into the workforce adequately prepared.

In a rapidly changing world of work it is more important than ever that young New Zealanders are given the opportunities to develop a wide range of skills and attributes that will serve them well in their working lives.


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Housing Affordability Map

We’ve all heard about the housing crisis in New Zealand right now – but it’s hard to get a sense of exactly how it’s affecting your area.

That’s why we’ve put together this new tool that lets you look up what the housing crisis looks like in your area.

Want to find out how the housing crisis is affecting your community?

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Andrew Little's Centenary policy speech

Tēnā koutou katoa

Can I begin by acknowledging Annette King.

Annette is an incredible Deputy Leader and a real source of counsel, wisdom and advice.

Can I also acknowledge the local MP David Cunliffe, and Phil Twyford our fantastic housing spokesperson. You’ve never seen Nick Smith look so scared as when Phil gets up to ask him a question in the house.

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State Houses: People over profit


State housing is meant to provide good quality housing to Kiwi families in need. The current government has used it as a revenue stream - siphoning off dividends and selling state houses, despite a huge waiting list and a shocking rise in homelessness.

National has taken $523m of profits out of Housing New Zealand, including a $118m dividend for 2015/16. That’s enough to have built over 1,500 state houses. At the same time, they have sold off 2,500 houses (net) since 2011, and are moving to sell thousands more to merchant bankers, property developers and overseas companies

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Labour’s Emergency Housing Plan


There are 4,200 New Zealanders sleeping rough or in cars at any one time. Because of insufficient emergency housing, it takes the Government over 155 days on average to house a homeless person.

No New Zealander should be homeless. We’re a better country than that. 

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Peter Fraser and the promotion of peace

Sunday marks 71 years since New Zealand’s then-Prime Minister Peter Fraser signed the founding charter of the United Nations.

Fraser felt so strongly about the need for an organisation that promoted peace in the world that he led the New Zealand mission to the founding meeting in San Francisco himself.

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On refugees – a timely reminder

In 1987 the Government established an annual quota for the resettlement of refugees. Originally set at 800, it was cut back to 750 in 1997, and has stayed at that number until Monday, when Michael Woodhouse announced National would be increasing the number by 250 to 1000. 

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