The Government has added 1,000 more transitional housing places as promised under the Aotearoa New Zealand Homelessness Action Plan (HAP), launched one year ago.
Minister of Housing Megan Woods says the milestone supports the Government’s priority to ensure every New Zealander has warm, dry, secure housing.
“Transitional housing provides people with an immediate housing need, some of who have been living in overcrowded situations, with warm, dry, short-term accommodation and vital wrap around support services,” Megan Woods said.
“This support means people get regular checks on their wellbeing, and help to ensure they have access to food, welfare, and healthcare. Increasing transitional housing is part of the Government’s on-going work to prevent and reduce homelessness and support people to transition into long-term accommodation.
“The majority of new transitional housing places (605 out of 1,000) are for families with children. This builds on the Government’s additional commitment to reduce child poverty and improve the wellbeing of all young people. The remaining transitional housing places will help to support singles or couples – particularly those with high and complex needs.
“Our Homelessness Action Plan proved vital to keep New Zealanders safe during our response to COVID-19 as we moved to get homeless people into safe, secure accommodation during the lockdown. Community organisations we’d already engaged with through the Plan were able to hit the ground running when it came to getting those people housed, and provided with health and wellbeing support, and many of those people are still being supported in this way,” Megan Woods said.
Associate Housing Minister (Homelessness) Marama Davidson says this illustrates the importance of the relationships the Homelessness Action Plan is growing with community providers who have links into communities.
“Māori and Iwi housing providers offer critical, kaupapa Māori focussed, accommodation and support. For example, in partnership with Kāhui Tū Kaha we have delivered 21 places. Kāhui Tū Kaha provide essential housing and mental health support services for households in Auckland and Whangarei. In addition, Kāhui Tū Kaha will be opening an additional 150 transitional housing properties within the next two months,” Marama Davidson said.
Meanwhile the Government continues to increase the overall supply of housing stock. Of the extra 1,000 transitional homes, 43% are newly constructed homes. New builds, like the 28 new transitional homes in Mangere, are important for growing the overall stock of housing available, as well as supporting the economy with jobs and apprenticeships. Delivering new build housing is a priority for this Government and is a key focus of the recently released Public Housing Plan 2021-24.
“We are moving at pace to build more homes. Since this Government took office, we’ve added 4,579 new build public houses across New Zealand and 2,111 transitional housing places. We are on track to deliver over 18,000 public and transitional housing places by 2024,” Megan Woods said.