Evicted from ‘her Housing New Zealand home’?

There was what looks like a quite sad story on Stuff yesterday about a young mother with two children whose mother has recently died having difficulty finding somewhere to live in Auckland.

That would be a reasonable story. But there’s aspects of the story that appear to be wrong or misleading.

Housing shortage hits young mum hard

The headline is fair enouigh.

A stoush over state housing tenancy rights has seen a young mother evicted with nowhere to turn.

The Pt England, Auckland resident, who asked not to be named, was given 21 days to leave her Housing New Zealand home of 15 years when her sick mother was moved to a rest home in October. Her mother died on December 5.

The 26-year-old has a 6-month-old baby and a 6-year-old daughter.

Some of that makes it a sad story. But some of it raises questions.

“A stoush over state housing tenancy rights” – but it appears that the 26-year-old didn’t have any state housing tenancy rights. Was she trying to claim rights she didn’t have?

“Her Housing New Zealand home of 15 years” – this women was eleven years old 15 years ago. She is not likely to have been given a state house when she was eleven.

No rent has been paid since October 16 and she was evicted on February 20, her possessions stacked on the lawn because she had nowhere to take them.

No rent paid since October 16.

Housing New Zealand spokeswoman Denise Fink said the tenancy legally ended on October 30.

Her mother moved to a rest home in October. The article doesn’t say it, and implies it’s the daughter’s state house, but it seems obvious this was the mother’s state house and when she moved out the tenancy ended.

The state housing landlord issued an extension while the resident searched for another home but eventually had to apply to the Tenancy Tribunal for immediate possession. Eviction was the only remaining option after months of repeatedly visiting and advising the tenant, Fink said.

Now the daughter is referred to as “the resident”. But it seems clear she had been living with her mother in her mother’s house.

So the “stoush over state housing tenancy rights” seems to be a case of the daughter trying to ‘inherit’ her mother’s state house tenancy.

Housing New Zealand gave her three months to find alternative housing, which seems very reasonable. Andn ikt’s very probable that this woman was aware well before the end of October that her mother was moving out and the tenancy would end.

It would be unfair on others on state housing waiting lists for a squatter to queue jump.

And it’s fair to wonder about the circumstances around a woman living with her mother having two children with no sign of a father or fathers.

Has she always lived with her mother? Or has she been away and came back when relationships didn’t work out?

The end circumstance is sad. Housing in Auckland is a crisis situation so that makes things difficult for this young sole parent.

But it’s also sad that people get themselves into circumstances like this and expect the State to hand houses down through the family.

Sky City eyesore

It’s a bit disgarceful that John Key would even suggest pouring taxpayer money into a deal that’s supposed to have already been done.

If he had any business nous he’d know when to walk away from an attempt to blatantly rip us off.

In any case an eyesore should fit in pretty well in the Auckland CBD, it’s not as if there’s anything much that’s nice left there.

If National fund a private gambling company development they should be roundly booed from the left and from the right.

Auckland sculptor upset about phallic ridicule

The scupltor who created the New Lynn ‘cock and balls’ scuplture is reported to be upset and sounds very defensive after much mirth and criticism. Stuff – Cloud or phallus? Sculpture an eye-opener for Aucklanders:

A controversial penis-shaped sculpture in Auckland was the “less phallic” version, says the upset artist behind it.

Gregor Kregar, who designed the Auckland Council-funded Transit Cloud sculpture, says early in the process a council member raised concerns that it looked like a penis.

“We modified it to make it look less phallic,” he says.

So he was warned about it’s likeness to something that could be ridiculed. It’s hard to see how it could have looked more phallic than it is now.

That the $200,000 piece has bemused locals after its erection comes as a surprise to Kregar.

“I recently had an exhibition with more than 200 people and not one of them mentioned that it looked phallic,” he says.

Not to his face.I wonder if he thought people were just laughing at each other.

Kregar, who has been working on the project for two-and-a-half years, says it’s not finished and the additional lights will make it less phallic.

Lights won’t make it look any different in daylight.

“People enjoy mentioning this stuff, I think. Technically anything can be phallic – a tree, a lamp post.

Trees and lamp posts tend not to look like a cock and balls.

“I’ve studied art and drawing for many years and I never came across a phallus made out of thousands of triangles that was six metres long.”

I’ve never come across a transit cloud made up of thousands of triangles that was six metres long either.

It’s not the triangles that stand out – no one has mentioned “Oh, look at the cloud made of triangles that might look different at night with lights on!”.

Scupltures are often made to a different scale than what they resemble.

This is very embarrassing for Kregar and I feel for him a bit but exhibitionsists should expect some criticism – especially when they cock things up on this scale.

The artist had no clothes.

Neither does the scuplture.

The sculpture that looks just like a transit cloud made of triangles.

Transit Cloud

‘bc’ at Kiwiblog on a new Auckland scuplture:

The ‘sculpture’ is called Transit Cloud and according to the artist is “acknowledging the local portage history and modern transport focus of the precinct.”

$200,000 sculpture erected ion New Lynn (NZ Herald)

Clearly everyone else just has a dirty mind and can’t appreciate art!

NZ Herald: ‘It’s a cock and balls': Phallic art stuns residents of New Lynn

Bets are off Sky City’s stupid gamble

Sky City did a deal with the Government. They got gambling concessions in return for the promise of a convention centre in Auckland.

Now Sky say their cost estimates have gone up and they need financial assistance.

But Len Brown says the Auckland City Council won’t fork out – Ratepayer cash won’t go into convention centre, mayor promises.

Auckland mayor Len Brown says the council will not put any ratepayer cash into building or running an international convention centre.

He told the Weekend Herald yesterday that there would be no money for the SkyCity convention centre in a new 10-year budget.

The council and Mr Brown were blindsided by suggestions from the Government and SkyCity before Christmas that ratepayers’ money be used to fund the shortfall in costs for the controversial project.

SkyCity said the original $402 million cost had been “revised” to $470 million and to $530 million.

That doesn’t rule out non-cash assistance such as rates relief, and…

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce floated the idea of ratepayers helping cover operating costs, but has since talked down the idea and suggested the council look at its regulatory fees for the consent and construction process.

But ruling out cash is sensible, and essential.

Who would want to finance a company who makes a deal based on costings that under-esitmated (or under-claimed) the cost by 20-30%?

Sky either cocked up or cooked up a massive con.

And the Government should discount any financial assistance too. They negotiated a deal based on no cost to taxpayers.

If National now bow to Sky’s coercion/attempted blackmail and fork out they will rightfully be blasted for it. It would look  that bad it would be likely to play a major part in the demise of Key’s government.

It would be a stupid business gamble and a very stupid political gamble.

And Sky have made a stupid gamble thinking they can fool us on their cost claims and suck us in to finance their folly.

Call their bluff. If they renege on their deal and ditch the convention centre Sky will be the biggest losers.

In gambling you need to know when to walk away.

Auckland demographics

From an interesting piece – Mai Chen: Hey Cabinet, we really need to talk - that suggests Auckland deserves some special political attention that isn’t well delivered from Wellington is a summary of changing Auckland demographics.

  • Almost 40 per cent of Aucklanders were born overseas (the third highest rate in the OECD).
  • One third of Aucklanders speak languages other than English, and many maintain active connections to their places of origin, including sending remittances home.
  • Auckland’s demographic transformation is still underway: it is estimated the Asian population of Auckland will grow by 130,000 in the seven years to 2021.
  • Asians are projected to comprise half of Auckland’s population growth in the next 20 years, and Pacific people 22 per cent.
  • Auckland is a Pacific Rim city, and an Asian one. In the near future most Aucklanders will be younger, and Asian, Maori or Pasifika.

The differences between Auckland and the rest of the country will widen.

From census totals:

Ethnic group    2001            2013
European 755,967 62.72%  789,306 53.47%
Maori 127,704 10.59% 142,770 9.67%
Pacific Island 154,683 12.83% 194,958 13.21%
Asian 151,644 12.58% 307,233 20.81%
Middle Eastern/Latin 13,335 1.11% 24,945 1.69%
‘New Zealanders’ n/a . 14,904 1.01%
 1,205,334 1,476,129

As a comparison Dunedin’s ethnicity (national figures in brackets):

  • 78.7% European (67.6%)
  • 6.4% Maori (14.7%)
  • 5.3% Asian (9.2%)
  • 2.2% Pacific Islanders (6.9%)
  • 0.7% Middle Eastern/Latin American/African (0.9%)
  • 13.6% ‘New Zealanders’ (11.1%)
  • 0.04% Other (0.04%).

Mana’s Manukau/Auckland candidates

The Mana Party have announced ten candidates for Tamaki (Auckland) electorates. None are rated a chance to win electorates but will use them to campaign for the party vote.

Joe Carolan – Mt Albert

Unite Union Staff – Joe is the Team Leader for Auckland based Organisers with direct responsibilities Cinemas and Central Auckland Fast Food restaurants.

Guest The Daily Blog post – Joe Carolan – I’m all for left wing unity, but not when the other guys are trying to kill you
Senior Organiser with Unite Union, writer for http://www.socialistaotearoa.org, Mana founding member

@SolidarityJoe
Irish socialist living in Aotearoa.

Socialist Aotearoa

Yvonne Dainty – Manurewa

Independent candidate for Auckland Council – Maungakiekie-Tamaki Local Board – Tamaki Subdivision

Everyone has a basic human right to live where they choose to make and be part of community as a family. To thrive and prosper under fair and due process and the right to Consultation, Accountability and Transparency.

State Housing is not a privilege it is a right. Social and Economic cleansing is not Social Equality.

Born in Tamaki attended local schools. Represented Auckland Hockey Teams and Waka Ama, and still an active member in the community.

I have written policy in 2009 for Health and Housing.

Community in Unity are families made up of Social Equality without prejudice.

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Dr Sitaleki Finau – Maungakiekie

Sitaleki ‘Ata’ata Finau was born in Masilamea, Tonga. He attended several primary schools at Te’ekiu, Nukunuku, Nuku’alofa and Toloa. He entered Tonga High School in 1961, and Auckland Grammar School in 1967. He later attended the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, graduating in 1975 from the School of Medicine, and in1981 graduated from the University of Otago, New Zealand with a Postgraduate Diploma of Community Health
. Since 1994, he has been a registered public health specialist in New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific.

He had since worked as: Assistant Professor for the University of Hawaii in Pohnpei; the Manager of Community Health Service for South Pacific Commission; Senior District Medical Officer and Public Health Specialist with the Remote Health Services and the Royal Australian Flying Doctors in Alice Spring, Central Australia; senior lecturer at the University of Auckland Medical school; and the Professor of Public Health at Fiji School of Medicine, Fiji in 2001 t0 2006. In June 2006 Professor Sitaleki became the Director of the Pasifika at Massey Strategy to put Pacificans in Massey University and Massey in and among the Pacific populations.Sitaleki is also interested in tennis, rugby, people, and food. He dabbles in writing of poetry and short stories mainly for his three children. He is passionate about all matters Pacific and cultural democracy.

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Roger Fowler – Papakura

Candidate 2013 - Roger & his wife Lyn have lived in Mangere East for 35 years, bringing up their family of four children and five mokopuna. Currently manager of the Mangere East Community Learning Centre, Roger has been a life-long community activist, and awarded a QSM 1999. A leading civil rights & peace advocate, & unionist since 1969. Occupations have included: bus driver, welder, & citizen journalist. Stood for the ARC in 2007, gaining nearly 11,000 votes in Manukau. Led many community campaigns including shutting down the polluting Airport incinerator. Editor of Fare Free NZ blog promoting free public transport, and Kia Ora Gaza website, Roger led two Kiwi delegations on humanitarian convoys to Gaza. He returned to Gaza on a fact-finding mission last November, & organized the NZ Conference on Palestine 2013. Working with MANA to transform Auckland into a vibrant city where the people & the environment always come first.

KIA ORA GAZA MISSION
Kia Ora Gaza is a New Zealand network dedicated to breaking the inhuman and illegal Israeli siege of Gaza by delivering humanitarian aid, fostering fraternal relations, enhancing understanding of Palestine and the Middle East, and cooperating with others who have similar aims.

Spoke at Socialist Aotearoa Conference 2013

Lisa Gibson – Tamaki

Member of the Tamaki Housing Group

Post on Socialist Aotearoa blog – We shall not be moved.

Spoke at Socialist Aotearoa Conference 2013

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUpi4BRNQ04

John Minto – Mt Roskill

Auckland mayoral candidate 2013 - John Minto for Mayor: “We need a Kiwi socialism”

A major goal of the Minto for Mayor campaign, John explains, is to change the perception of MANA as simply a Maori Party split, with Pakeha (European-ethnicity) leftists merely being supporters of Maori aspirations. John gives this as the reason why, in the last general election in 2011, “all of the MANA candidates in general seats bombed”, and only their main Maori spokesperson, Hone Harawira, was elected to Parliament.

Building “a broader base for MANA in Tamaki” is thus a crucial goal of the campaign. To this end, John mentions the role of revolutionary leftists – in particular the Socialist Aotearoa group – in his campaign, alongside single-issue activists such as the Tamaki Housing Group and some individual Green Party members.

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Makelesi Ngata – Upper Harbour

Candidate 2013  Auckland Council – Maungakiekie-Tamaki Local Board – Tamaki Subdivision – I was born and raised in Aotearoa (New Zealand), female and 36 years of age, Polynesian descent. I come from a very big but close knit family. I grew up in Glen Innes, from Madeline Avenue to Torrington Crescent. I attended Glen Taylor Primary School, then went on to attend Glen Innes Intermediate and finished my secondary school years at Glendowie College, landing my first job at 3 Guys as a checkout girl.

Studying in various tertiary institutions and working in different roles has taught me a lot, it is time to stand up and say “enough is enough”. Discrimination and segregation derives from unjust policies and unjust law; we need to learn from history, not repeat it! Implement a plan that is fair and just. We are not to ‘oppress but to progress’. The big picture is not to be exclusive but inclusive, regardless of race or social background.

Comment The Daily Blog: I totally support you Joe Carolan as we have one heck of a fight on our hands. In saying that the movement of the people have been fighting and supporting at grass roots level. Now that MP Hone Harawira is taking Mana to another level, politicians want to slam the new alliance. I say “grow up and get over it”! Move on because time waits for nobody nor does the Government’s selling of Aotearoa and the breed of merciless corporate corrupted bodied scumbags, that bring in oil rigs and evil mindsets of gentrification as we see evident today. People out there that still want to vote for National? Better check themselves before they wreck themselves. At the end of the day no kiwis will be able to afford homes in their own country. Let alone securing a job and having to pay back debt on student loans. So if you want all this to go away their is only one way to turn to the left! to the left!

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Pat O’Dea – Epsom

Mana candidate for Epsom 2011.

“Pat O’Dea is an Auckland based Socialist Worker activist and former Communist Party of New Zealand member. He is from an Irish Republican supporting family.” Source

Unity Aotearoa

Facebook Biography
Trade unionist, peace activist and land rights activist Pat O’Dea affectionately known as “protest pat” by his workmates is standing in Epsom where he intends use the electorate as a base to attack the right –wing polices advocated by ACT.

“Their policies designed to appeal to red-neck elements are racist and need to be challenged head on and this is exactly what MANA’s policies and people will do,” Mr O’Dea says.

James Papali’i – Mangere

Mr Papali’i also chaired the Mangere East Labour Branch Party for the past 15 years recently resigning to take up the challenge of standing for Mangere representing the Mana party. He is well known in the Mangere Community and he currently works voluntarily for the Samoan Fesoasoani Trust which was founded by Alan Tanuelu and his dad Thomas Papali’i who passed away in 2000. James currently works for M.U.M.A as their Kaitoko Whanau Worker in the areas of Mangere, Otahuhu and Papatoetoe. Source

GUEST BLOG: James Papali’i – Mangere Peace Festival

Joe Trinder – Manukau East

Candidate 2013 - I live in Mangere and am married with one daughter. I am an average Kiwi and work in Information Technology in the Security Industry. I am passionate about Manukau and want free public transport with free wifi. I want to build 20,000 Council rental homes, a living wage for Aucklanders of $18.40 an hour and Robin Hood rates.

Endorsed by Union Auckland.

Mana Party member Joe Trinder, who is contesting the Manukau ward, says he wants to launch a policy to discriminate against the big foreign restaurants.
He was impressed during a recent visit to San Francisco by the cheap, nutritious and healthy food options being offered by the Hispanic community.
But people in south Auckland are facing “death by fried chicken”, Mr Trinder, of Ngati Awa, says.
He says he would also like to get smaller, local businesses which sell fried chicken to change their menus to offer healthier food, such as burritos.

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See: SOCIALISM 2013 – Socialist Aotearoa Conference

12.00pm – 1.00pm | Te Kapehu Whetū: The Future of Mana
With: John Minto Mana’s Auckland Mayoral candidate; Lisa Gibson, Tamaki Makaurau chair; Roger Fowler, Mangere council candidate and Respect Our Community chair;

Cunliffe preferred less in Auckland and by women

Labour has a major problem. David Cunliffe has an even bigger problem, especially in Auckland and with women.

Labour has struggled (and failed) to recover and rebuild since Helen Clark and Michael Cullen departed after their 2008 election loss.

Phil Goff failed to inspire, the David Shearer experiment at first seemed possibly inspired but turned out to be deluded, and after an initial surge David Cunliffe is failing to impress. The latest Herald/Digipoll has Cunliffe polling lower than Shearer ever was in ‘preferred PM’.

Party poll results for Labour (compared to December 2013):

  • Total 29.5% (down 5.9)
  • Male 27.2% (down 5.5)
  • Female 31.5% (down 6.6)
  • Auckland 26.7% (down 9.9)
  • Rest of NZ 31% (down 3.7)

Labour usually gets more female support but that is coming down significantly. They should be particularly worried about their crash in support in Auckland.

Preferred PM for Cunliffe:

  • Total 11.1% (down 5.4)
  • Male 12.3% (down 5.3)
  • Female 10.1% (down 4.8)

Female support for Labour is higher than male support (31.5 to 26.7), but rate Cunliffe lower as preferred PM than males (10.1 to 12.3).

In comparison ‘preferred PM’ for John Key:

  • Total 66.5% (up 4.7)
  • Male 70.4% (up 8.5)
  • Female 62.7% (down 0.1)

Key is significantly more preferred by male than female but he gets well over National levels of support from both genders.

Comprehensive poll results including regional and gender breakdowns at NZ Herald – National, Greens up, Labour at new low.

A window on Auckland arrogance

Auckland arrogance isn’t as Kiwi as number eight wire but it’s a large fencepost with a shallow foundation.

Gregor Paul, Herald on Sunday’s rugby writer makes typically Auckland arrogant claims in Doubts over Marshall a failing of Auckland.

There’s a reason that Marshall, with his fame, many endorsements and TV presenter wife didn’t consider going anywhere else in New Zealand.

Auckland has the pizzazz, glamour and maturity to house him with minimal fuss in much the same way Sydney did.

That’s reason for Aucklanders to be proud rather than embarrassed. This idea that New Zealand is defined by square-jawed sheep farmers, cold beer, tractors and loyalty to the Empire may be alive in the provinces. But that is old New Zealand.

Auckland represents the new face of the country: multi-cultural Auckland and its obsession with coffee, schools, celebrities and property prices is New Zealand’s window to the rest of the world.

Correction – the Auckland as Paul as describes it represents a new part-of-Auckland. The city is far more diverse than that.

The country is far more than Auckland, notably New Zealand rugby that has as much to thank Canterbury and Waikato in particular recently for the country’s rugby profile.

Paul may like to think that Auckland is “New Zealand’s window to the rest of the world” but expresses a typically flawed Auckland arrogance that ignores the bulk of the country as insignificant.

(Most Aucklanders aren’t arrogant but those who are often make the most noise).

Treaty settlement enables iwi housing development

An imminent treaty settlement has enabled a partnership of thirteen iwi to launch a low cost housing development in Auckland.

NZ Herald Editorial: Iwi housing plan shows what Treaty really means

The scheme, reported in the Herald yesterday, is a reminder on the eve of Waitangi Day that the spirit of the Treaty often moves in creative ways.

The 16ha site on the Manukau, formerly a farm next to the Weymouth children’s home, will contain 282 units, of which 127 will be sold on the open market and up to 99 will be tenanted on shared equity or rent-to-buy arrangements. The rest will be low rent tenancies, administered by several independent charities rather than Housing NZ.

The units will be built to several different designs, all double-storeyed and on much less land than the state houses of areas such as Otara and Glen Innes where permanent tenants, who regard the houses as their own, have been waging a long resistance to more intensive redevelopment.

In developments such as Waimahia – Weymouth’s Maori name – the abolition of permanent tenancy will have immediate effects. One of these effects may be to ensure that renters look to take advantage of the shared equity and rent-to-buy offers as soon as they can.

If it works to plan, there will be a constant turnover of rentals, enabling people in the most desperate need to be given adequate housing quickly, and encouraging them in turn to move to at least partial ownership as soon as they can.

The site is Auckland Council’s first designated “special housing area” for fast-track resource consents. Earthworks have started. The first units are expected to be built by August or September. It could be a model for affordable housing schemes elsewhere. On the eve of the Treaty commemoration, it is already a fine example of what it means.

Sounds like a worthwhile investment of a treaty settlement. It should benefit the iwi involved – property is usually a sound investment – and it will assist people into homes of their own.

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