Despite it being part of her ministerial brief, Marama Davidson remains silent about the social disaster that is Rotorua's transitional housing. She's paid a lot of money for not doing her job...
THE ASSOCIATE MINISTER of Housing (with special responsibility for homelessness) has continued to remain resolutely silent on the deteriorating situation in Rotorua's so-called 'transitional housing'. She did however manage to retweet a graph from Stuff journalist Kirsty Johnson that puts the previous National Government's record on state housing in a bad light and much inferior to that of the present Labour Government. Rather than promoting the Green's own housing policies, the Green co-leader seems more intent on defending the Labour Government's record.
As Davidson has added no additional comment we can only assume that she's suggesting that New Zealand's chronic homelessness problem is largely the fault of the previous National Government. Mostly bereft of any original ideas herself, she's simply regurgitating the repeated views of the Prime Minister.
But as Kirsty Johnston herself has commented, housing statistics can be spun every each way. In the way of illustration she writes that only half of the 'new' public housing in the three years to April 2021 claimed by the Government were actually additional, newly built homes. As she has pointed out:
'This is because while Kainga Ora (formerly Housing New Zealand) will have built around 4800 homes in that timeframe, it will have also demolished or sold 2700 homes, meaning its gain is more like 2100 net houses.'
Although Davidson is trying to escape any responsibility for the homelessness crisis, it doesn't explain why the numbers in transitional housing continue to increase under her watch. It also doesn't explain why she has done nothing about the appalling conditions that people are forced to live in.
There is no greater condemnation of capitalism than its inability to provide adequate housing for those who produce its wealth — the working class. But Davidson, lost to the banality of woke politics, is bereft of any semblance of class analysis. She represents a Maori elite not so much concerned with changing the system but ensuring that they themselves can benefit from it. The casualties of that approach are the folk, including Maori, trapped in the transitional housing dumping grounds.
Despite her abject failure to deal with the crisis, Davidson has escaped scrutiny from the mainstream media. It has been more interested in her appalling Whittaker's Chocolate performance rather her appalling performance as the Assistant Minister of Housing (with special responsibility for homelessness).
Meanwhile it has been reported this week that nearly 400 children with their families are living in Christchurch motels. That's according to the Ministry of Social Development. This is another social time bomb that Marama Davidson is unlikely to defuse anytime soon.