New Zealand Labour Party

Māori Party must fight for housing for whanau

The Māori Party has clearly given up trying to help its people into housing through its support arrangement with the National Government, Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Kelvin Davis says.

“Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell has acknowledged that his Maori Party isn’t making enough progress in helping Māori into their own homes.

“The Minister has raised the white flag with his comments that ‘there are certain conditions you cannot change, and that's the high cost of houses, not enough houses being available for people to move in to, a change of rules, access to finance, access to land’.

“Te Ururoa Flavell should hang his head in shame. The reason house prices are so high is that the Government his party props up has ignored the housing crisis and sat by while skyrocketing rents force whanau to live in cars and garages.

“The Minister needs to try harder. Labour MPs aren’t struggling to find ways to help the homeless. Tāmaki Mākaurau MP Peeni Henare approached more than six urban marae before Te Puea opened their doors. He also organised the delivery of free whiteware and blankets to the marae.

“The Māori Party are supporting National’s state house sell-off. If they wanted to help whanau they would insist the Government build more state houses, not sell them off.

“Māori are among the worst affected by the housing crisis and homeownership rates are now at record lows.

“The Māori Party need to insist the Government stop tinkering around the edges with ineffective housing policies, embark on a massive state-backed affordable house building programme and crack down on offshore speculators pushing up house prices,” Kelvin Davis says.