Another winter of homelessness under National

With 3,422 people urgently waiting for a place to live and 1,805 empty state homes, New Zealand is heading into another winter of homelessness under National, the Green Party said today.

“Last winter New Zealanders were shocked at the extent of homelessness and after a year of the National Government rushing around trying to look like it’s tackling the problem, things are actually getting worse,” said Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei.

“The tragic truth that we’re hearing from the people working at the frontline of the housing crisis is that this is going to be another winter of families sleeping in their cars, garages and on the streets.

“Homelessness is going to be this National Government’s legacy. The housing crisis is a product of their policies that allow property speculators a free ride on one hand, while state houses are sold off with the other hand.

“National refused to participate in the Green-Labour-Maori Party Homelessness Inquiry because they said they already knew the problem and the solutions, but where are those solutions when more people than ever are in desperate need of a place to live?

“Under National, we are now living in cities where people with decent jobs cannot afford a place to live and that shows the economy is broken and the housing market is in crisis.

“It took until election year for National to decide to moderately increase the Government’s building programme, but not enough to actually fix the problem.

“The Green Party in Government will make fixing housing a priority, with a capital gains tax on investors, stopping overseas speculators, a significant building programme, and a rent-to-buy system,” Mrs Turei said.

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