Metiria Turei. Thank you Mr Speaker. Renters deserve warm, dry, and safe homes. Renting is now a reality for a third of New Zealanders in this country. That’s nearly 1.5m New Zealanders living in rental homes. And everyone of those New Zealanders deserves to live in a warm, dry and safe home, Mister Speaker.
The Green Party will do what’s right by renters, and it’s right to make our homes
warm, safe and dry, for our kids and for our families. It’s right, and not only that
Mister Speaker, it’s 100% possible to make New Zealand homes warm, dry and safe. We need to have, New Zealand needs to have, a warrant of fitness for rental properties in this country that is what is needed to make homes warm, dry and safe. So I am urging New Zealanders to sign the Green Party petition, and you can find it on our website, that will urge
this parliament to be put in place a warrant of fitness for New Zealand’s rental homes. And why is this important Mister Speaker? Well we know that 15 children, on average, in this country will die from conditions related to cold, damp and mouldy houses. 15 children on average each year. Think for a moment of the 40,000 hospitalisations of children, this winter, from respiratory illness. 40,000. That is the entire population of Gisborne,
every man woman and child, going to hospital for respiratory illness. The entire population of Whanganui. The entire population of Blenheim going to hospital – that is the equivalent.
We can fix that. We can make sure that our kids and our grandparents and our families are safe in their homes, with a warrant of fitness for rental homes that will make those homes warm, dry, and safe. Mister Speaker, the power is in the hands of this parliament when it soon comes to debate the residential tenancies bill. We can choose in this house to make sure that our homes are warm, dry and safe for our kids, for our families, for
our grandparents. That power also rests in the hands of the public. And the public saying, we demand that our parliament puts in place the systems that
will protect our families this winter. Mister Speaker, I urge everyone to sign the petition, to make sure our rental homes are warm dry and safe.