Marama Davidson: Jump in social housing wait list shows 'system is broken'

Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Wednesday, 20 February 2019, 6:56AM
Marama Davidson. Photo / Michael Craig

Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson says the 70 per cent increase in people waiting for state housing shows that the system is broken. 

The number of people in the urgent queue for social housing has passed 10,000 - a 70 per cent increase in the last year.

The Green Party housing spokesperson told Kate Hawkesby it is a huge jump, which highlights the severity of New Zealand's housing crisis.

"We are seeing the manifestation, the sharp end of that coming to a head. I'm not confident that it also won't get worse."

She said this shows the system is clearly broken and needs urgent action.

"There clearly is something that isn't working when you have got 10,000 on the waiting list."

"I talked to a man last night, who is one of the many, many broken-hearted stories, about how desperate he is to find just clean, decent housing [and] how difficult that is to be affordable."

Davidson said they are supporting Housing Minister Phil Twyford and the Government's aim to build 8000 homes by 2023.

"We know there is an issue and we want to work and continuing supporting Minister Twyford to ramp up the public and state housing build and I know that he is already on this."

Davidson said the housing issue is a massive crisis that won't be fixed overnight.

"That's why the Greens are very clear that we need to look at a whole lot of things alongside each other."

"Rent reforms, making sure that people have secure tenancies [becuase] we know that this can also see people driven into a situation of having no home."

"We need to understand that affordability is driving people out of the private market of renting and we have been very clear, that we want to ensure that epope have enough income to live with dignity."

"These things all need to be looked at alongside the housing prices."

When asked whether allowing state tenants to live in their homes indefinitely was contributing to the crisis, she said they have to ensure ordinary people can get into the private housing sector first.

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