New Zealand Labour Party

Man without power for 2 years but HNZ to check paddling pools

Housing NZ has totally flawed priorities when it can let a man with an intellectual disability live in a flat without power because of water damage for two years, but require tenancy managers to approve paddling pools, Labour’s MP for Hutt South Trevor Mallard says.

“The man lives in a Housing NZ flat in Petone – in my electorate – which is virtually unliveable. There are holes in the walls, mould, a broken door and window, and peeling wallpaper.

“The tenants in the upstairs and neighbouring units have been relocated while they were done up, but his flat – which is in the worst condition – was ignored. This man has been unable to look after himself and his case was only raised when a neighbour who had been supporting him reported concerns.

“Worst of all is that Housing NZ has known for some time about the state of the flat – and that this man was without power after water damaged the wiring – and has done absolutely nothing about it.

“Meanwhile the Corporation is putting out glossy brochures telling Housing NZ tenants that if they want a paddling pool, they have to get a tenancy manager to visit the property and approve it.

“This advice is so gratuitous it suggests emptying paddling pools before taking them inside.

“Having tenancy managers inspect a paddling pool is a total waste of time. Housing NZ is nanny state when it’s not needed and totally uncaring when they need to show compassion. Most case managers are now on phones at WINZ call centres and Housing NZ’s head office is focused on selling-off state houses instead of providing quality supported accommodation.

“Housing NZ has a statutory duty to care for those in need – the Government must ensure it does just that,” Trevor Mallard says.