Border Vaccination fiasco & State House meltdown – bad day at the Office for Labour

Chris Bishop has a good day at the Office

Finding out that border security staff have been deceptive is one thing, but the fact that there might be up to 60 floating around seems a tad careless…

Covid 19 coronavirus: Up to 60 MIQ workers still not being tested regularly

Up to 60 MIQ workers might be floating around their communities without being regularly tested, but Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says the risk is “very low”.

After everything that everyone has sacrificed,  Kiwis won’t accept ‘very low’ as a risk at all! That as many as 60 people might be a means for this to spread is such an enormous blunder you fear the Government are losing control of the situation.

There is also the vaccination issue here and the reliance on private companies to police these rules themselves seems woefully optimistic.

That wasn’t the only front the Government were fighting, stats released show the high rate of demolishing State Houses hasn’t kept up with building new ones…

Government has sold or demolished nearly 2000 state houses since July 2018

The Government has sold or demolished nearly 2000 state houses since July 2018, Newshub can reveal.

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And while Housing Minister Megan Woods continues to trumpet a bonanza state house build, the number of state houses managed by Kāinga Ora – Housing NZ – has actually fallen.

Newshub can reveal that since July 2018 there have been 3840 new Kāinga Ora state homes built. It has also purchased and leased some existing houses. But over that same period, Kāinga Ora ended a lease, sold or demolished 1900. 

The number of Kāinga Ora houses – Government state houses – actually fell in the final three months of last year from 64,000 to 63,629 – 379 fewer state houses than in September.

Dr Woods says that reflects a lease of Porirua state houses to Ngati Toa to manage, which is part of a particular Treaty relationship. 

The houses are still owned by Kāinga Ora, but managed by the iwi.

…it was almost an afterthought to explain the drop in total state homes is driven by new partnerships, but even with that taken as a given, such a flat growth overall pales into insignificance when you consider there are 22 000 waiting on a waiting list.

The border screw ups only become a political factor if the virus gets lose in NZ and if voters perceive it to be from incompetence and as long as Labour keeps the virus out, no one in middle New Zealand will care about the lack of State Houses.

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  1. The MoH operates an honesty system for Covid checks on frontline quarantine workers. And the government were oblivious. How very unreassuring. When the fuck is Hipkins going to start being proactive and do the thinking for these fools? Fooled me once, fooled me 100 times.

    As for housing, it gets worse. Labour have proven to be an unmitigated disaster. Aside from the fact there are now fewer state houses, these geniuses have made housing practically unaffordable for generations by pumping cheap money at housing.

    And their latest panic induced bungling is going to be to force changes on the council’s so silly things like parking and height restrictions can be ignored. Streets awash with cars parked wherever and 10 story blocks next to single level suburban houses. And at a time when apartment building is a spectacular disaster with quality problems because so many problems of the building industry remain firmly in place despite Labour knowing that.

    And where oh where are the useless Green Party?

    • XRAY, but business in NZ is soooo honest still and saving the world with all their corporate welfare…. or maybe government ministries are so gullible and incompetent and enjoy blaming others for not doing their job and checks properly and have real penalties for businesses that lie and are incompetent… Apparently the Russian Fishers were fully vetted too, ok, maybe not…

      Coronavirus: Emails show NZ Government was in the dark over Russian mariners who tested positive for COVID-19

      • After the never ending unreliability of poorly paid security staff last year, our ministers were clever enough to get it off the front pages by having us believe security guards had been replaced by NZ Defence Force staff. Well maybe for a few weeks but slowly back they came, security on the cheap won the day but a charade was left in place by having soldiers at the front door in front of public eye.

        Rat cunning politicians think their deception fools us but their lies get found out because the hopeless security industry cannot help but stuff up. By their very nature of poor pay, poor conditions profit oriented model, they are preprogrammed to fail.

        That this government have egg on their face yet again for piss poor management is justice but the fact is NZ is at risk and at least part of system is based on dumb luck!

        I really wonder if Jacinda and her government are masochistic by nature rather than tge far better alternative of embracing well thought out planning.

  2. The paradox of knowing the government is almost completely incompetent and not knowing the government is almost completely incompetent at the same time. And the answer is a bigger government.

    • Yep well at least if it’s not one committed to the neo-liberal faith:
      “….. neoliberal powers-that-be (in both their centre-left and centre-right incarnations ….. ” – the effects of which Chris Trotter describes in his latest.
      Unfortunately things might have to get worse before they get better when politicians wake up and find themselves despised and almost irrelevant.

      • The irony is that things are getting worse yet support for worse is on the rise.
        Chris Trotter, the academic, the idealist, whether he knows it or not is just advocating for more of the same.

  3. It’s diabolical how bad this govt is. Incredible that we as a nation tolerate this much incompetence. We are too nice to our highly-paid politicians, we’re like stunned mullets. Also reading Trotters article on AKL Council, another shocker. The saddest part is the fact that there is no real choice for us voters. Who else is there to vote for????

    • The saddest part is the fact that there is no real choice for us voters. Who else is there to vote for????’

      Vote for nobody.

      Nobody will have the interests of the weak and the poor at heart.

      Nobody will be always thinking about the long-term sustainability of the nation.

      Nobody will tackle the banking system that is at the core of our predicament.

      Nobody will challenge the idiotic theories of modern-day economists.

      Nobody will put an end to the rorts and back-room deals that characterise life in NZ.

      Nobody will implement policies to remove the stranglehold certain nations have around New Zealand’s neck.

    • Exactly they are the better of horrid choices.
      Same as JacindaBlair, Labour in name only (LINO). A lovely PR person but seemingly sh1t at fixing anything that needs fixing.
      Though credit (given) where credit is due, well done lady on the 50/50 call to close the borders early.
      If ONLY everything else wrong that needs fixing was just a heads or tail call and one didn’t actually have to do much other than ‘call’.
      As you say who else to vote for !!!!!!

  4. When is anybody going to realise that having low paid, low skilled workers hired for their ability to work for bottom dollar is probably not a good idea long term – aka employers are incompetent and lying, workers are incompetent and lying and so forth…. This is not just security guards. This neoliberal model has invaded NZ and the world by ending fixed term employment conditions in favour of subcontractor models with gig workers, with the cheapest person they can find, that change constantly, are generally untrained with poor communication skills and actually don’t do a quality job while their employers are often charging premium rates for the service .

    Apparently OZ guards were paid peanuts while their employers were charging $70 p/h to the government and having sex with the guests to boot leading to lock downs in OZ!

  5. As for the state houses, why are they demolishing them or putting in the worst upgrades they can find.

    Private partnerships DO NOT work, at any point iwi, councils, charity and quasi companies can then sell off the houses or raise rents and low and behold more cheap houses lost! They may not have any intention now of selling them off, but if they run out of money, go bankrupt, or get a neoliberal advisor in, guess what, they may lose those houses. Has happened so many times in so many countries, let’s not pretend that the ‘charity’, partnership models still count as ‘state houses’. They are not!

    It probably costs $50k – $150k to upgrade existing state houses, but apparently the do the John Key model and quickly sell them or demolish them in the middle of a housing crisis. If they can’t work out that builders in NZ are now a visa Ponzi and can’t build anything and full of questionable owners whose buildings have fallen down in the past, ( something is wrong!

    • Have a look at Ports of Auckland, in a quasi company running the ports for Auckland Council for the ratepayers. They are so incompetent that now the cries are to sell off the ports altogether and privatise it completely so that’s more gone from the public. Don’t be fooled by the ‘half measure’ of having new management (even if it sounds lovely like iwi) because we can see that Grenfell aka lots of different management companies and structures, is on it’s way faster to NZ.

  6. And the problem is, if National were our government they would have just past more laws under urgency, poo pooing on all our rights and privacy whilst opening our border for trade and business as usual. We know this as they have a track record for doing this. The slow rollout of the Covid vaccine is not such a bad thing as it gives us more time to weigh up the risks, evidence and look at the data. Good things are not rushed we are not in the same positions as many other countries and neither are our Aussie mates.

  7. Security guards are part of the low paid precarious economy. Security firms are notorious for shoddy labour practices and management indifference to concepts such as credibility. I know this from many years in the union movement at executive and workplace level. So expecting such people to be the front line of anything is the proverbial big ask. Several unions have and are trying to get better organisation in Security, but it is a monumental job, in part due to churn of company identities and staff.

    When the opposition are even partly right about something it is nuisance enough, but it must still be admitted. The frustrating part is much of the time the info comes from Ministry leaks, and 99% of the time the opposition is going for “gotchas” and “kills” rather providing genuine public service.

    It seems sometimes that anything in this country that moves has either been contracted out, or will be, with no one to take accountability because…not my job–it’s their job–we didn’t know–it is not in the contract–we are still assessing that–we are ahead of modelling…

    • And security guards have rights and privacy is one of them they also have the right to receive a decent pay and be safe in their place of employment.

  8. There seems to be a lack of understanding and self delusion from government, lefties, government ministries, media and individuals that NZ can can actually build new houses, when everything NZ has done for 30 years under neoliberalism seems to be getting worse!

    Don’t demolish old homes, just upgrade them to healthy homes which is cheaper, quicker and able to be rented faster and avoids the problems of remedial new work. The NZ Ponzi construction visa labour scheme is never going to deliver these houses quickly and cheaply (and requires more homes for the people to build the said homes) and once built (to time with our carbon neutral 2050?) there will be problems with the new builds.

    Housing documentary reveals shocking state of New Zealand apartment blocks

    Look at the results of our biggest builder, Fletchers, somehow the buildings just don’t get built and even if they do there is plenty of remedial work and people have to move out!

    Fletcher/Todd block at Stonefields, Auckland had defects: Six-year-old Altera Apartments under repair

    SkyCity convention centre fire: Construction boss was six days into new job when fire broke out

    They don’t just wreck the housing industry anymore, they are disrupting entire cities!

    The real Ponzi in NZ is rezoning the land, because building is real and costs a lot of money, unlike making millions from rezoning land and getting the other ratepayers pay for your development infrastructure!

    Not the hard to upgrade state houses, apparently it’s so easy for private landlords (sarcasm), but too hard for government and community housing providers. Government agencies somehow think the answer is to just demolish them, and when they try to rebuilt them, it never happens quite how they expect it or as easy and cheap as they thought it would be.

    • You are forgetting that demolishing a state house provides enough land for a speculator to construct an apartment block or several ‘townhouses’, each of which can be sold for the price paid for the purchased state house (or more).

      ‘Developing’ land in that manner also deals with the problem of fruit trees and vegetable plots, which ‘nobody’ wants any more; they prefer to sit inside watching Netflix (or even the garbage offered by TVNZ), and order home delivery of fast-food because they are sophisticated and are keeping up with all the latest trends. They’ve got Apps that make ordering junk-food so much easier.

      If the goggle-box tells them to wear black, they wear black. If the goggle-box tells them to wear orange they wear orange. If the goggle-box tells them to complain about petrol prices or the lack of tourism opportunities they complain about petrol prices or the lack of tourism opportunities.

      It’s ‘1984’ and ‘Brave New World’ blended, with a touch of ‘Star Trek’ and ‘The Jetsons’.

      “Beam me up, Scotty,” I’m on the wrong planet

      • Yes, privatising state house land by stealth (for nothing!) while they are already agitating once getting that through, that that there is not enough state house land and they need to buy more, maybe from Fletchers or Lord Sleepyhead estate? What a nice idea,(sarcasm) and the state house tenants can be housed in motels during the public to private land transfer, now their state house is demolished.

        Happened in the UK and now the government and councils are being bankrupted by paying the market rents for the state housing and massive demand from immigration when they expanded the EU.

    • “There seems to be a lack of understanding and self-delusion from government, lefties, government ministries, media and individuals …” exactly right.

      It’s a strategy to not resolve the problem. It’s designed to perpetuate the Housing Crisis. There’s money in obfuscation and the perpetual status quo.

  9. The more I read of the state housing disposal the more I just shake my head. The optics are just horrendous. And yet the Labour brains trust are blind to it.

    The response that no one could possibly believe is “this allows us to get the right home in the right place”. Christ sake Megan, was that the best the PR Dept could come up with? Sack them if so.

    And why do Kainga Ora do such an abysmal job of maintaining existing stock anyway? Everyone knows it except our cotton wool packaged Ministers. If they did maintenance you would not have to sell them off or bowl them, at least not because they were condemned.

    There is obviously no intent to do anything about the housing crisis except the barest of bare minimum. Otherwise they’d be throwing the kitchen sink at it social housing.

    Megan Woods has proven utterly hopeless.

    • One of the problems with this government and the last National government was they give these government agencies a Maori name and think that has solved the problem.

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