“Leave us something to live on”

Press Release – Voice For Fair Rents

Waitakere City Council tenants will hold a protest rally at 9am on Thursday 10th June ahead of the Council’s Finance and Operational Performance committee meeting at 9.30am.

“Leave us something to live on”

Rent Rise Protest Rally by Waitakere City tenants
on D DAY June 10th

Waitakere City Council tenants will hold a protest rally at 9am on Thursday 10th June ahead of the Council’s Finance and Operational Performance committee meeting at 9.30am. Councillors will be making their final decision on the controversial proposed rental policy for their housing for older adults. This will see pensioners’ rent assessed at 30%, rather than 25%, of gross income. Most tenants’ income is solely from superannuation.

Waitakere’s rents are already the most expensive across local authority housing in the Auckland region.

The protest rally is organised by the tenants’ committee, Voice for Fair Rent. We will be joined by our guest speaker, Carmel Sepuloni MP, Labour’s associate spokesperson for Social Development,
and candidate for the Waitakere electorate.

“25% of net income or 30% of gross income – this is the battle line where we, the pensioners, are holding fast,” says Frank Broomfield, committee chair. “The Council have shown their colours by standing resolutely in opposition to Government affordability guidelines as reflected by Housing Corp’s rent of 25% net income, and other Auckland Councils.”

Protesters will then go to the committee meeting where Mr Broomfield will also address councillors. “I will present them with a plan whereby the pensioner housing can indeed become self-funding.

Tenants have been organising against this proposed rent rise since January, calling it a “step too far.” A petition, with 150 tenants’ signatures, was presented to Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse in early February calling on Council to properly consult with tenants on the impact of the proposed change. Tenants finally got their chance on 30th April when over 110 tenants met at Kelston Community Centre together with a majority of councillors.

“We hope that councillors will have got the picture that for the majority of tenants this proposed rent rise will severely impact on our already restricted lives,” said Frank Broomfield. “The decision councillors make on this day will not only have far reaching consequences for us, but also for other local authority tenants when we all come under one super council.”

ENDS

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