Wellington welcomes Healthy Homes Bill
By Anonymous on November 21, 2013

Fuseworks Media (25/10/2013) has reported that Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown has welcomed the ideas behind Labour MP Phil Twyford's Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill.

The bill, that was drawn from the Parliamentary ballot on 24 October 2013, aims to legislate that rental properties in New Zealand meet minimum standards of insulation and heating.

Recently Mayor Wade-Brown herself, launched a proposal for a 'warrant of fitness' scheme to encourage landlords to upgrade housing to more healthy levels by grading the warmth and insulation of housing in the capital.

Mayor Wade-Brown said she would be “more than happy” if her recent proposal is overtaken by legislation resulting from the Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill.  She highlighted that  enormous amounts of energy and money are wasted as occupants in damp and cold homes struggle to keep warm due to lack of heating and insulation.  She would also like to see broader issues like earthquake safety considered if this Bill receives support.

“New Zealand has some of the coldest and most unhealthy housing in the world,” said Mayor Wade-Brown, indicating that unnecessary sickness and suffering results from the low temperaturs and the dampness common in these homes. 

The Council's Community, Sport and Recreation Chair, Councillor Paul Eagle, says that protecting the health of Wellingtonians is critical as poor housing leads to poor health.

He says that research studies such as He Kai Oranga, undertaken by Wellington's School of Medicine, reinforced the fact that overcrowding and damp, cold houses were a lethal combination.

Councillor Eagle noted that the City Council has already made significant progress around making its own housing stock warm and dry. For the past six years, the Council's own rental housing stock has been upgraded with insulation and heating thanks to a $400 million programme that is jointly funded with the Government. “It's a huge programme but we are making great progress,” says Councillor Eagle.

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