Perhaps the PM should give himself a reality check; pull his head out of the sand or take a trip to the world of renting, where many land lords care only about the profit they make. I am not saying that the majority of LLs are like that, but a significant number will look at his comments about ‘doing the right thing’ and laugh all the way to the bank.
Come on Johnny boy, get real. Unless there are legislated minimum standards, why would many LLs bother to make their ‘investments’ healthy for their tenants? History has taught us that sometimes the Government has to take a lead over issues of importance. Take minimum wages. If it was open slather, God knows how low some employers would go in an effort to keep wages low and their profits high. One only has to look at some of the reports about immigrant workers being ripped off to quote a recent example.
This Government represents what so many National Governments have done in the past. They have often done nothing on issues that affect the poorer sector of society until the problem becomes so serious that even they cannot ignore it. Then, they will pass legislation that only goes so far; believing that they have quelled the outrage, even if only temporarily.
Labour is better but far from perfect. Their conservative members have also watered down effective laws in the past and under Rogernomics (Something that they are trying to forget) they showed a side that hurt many.
Back to our ‘houses.’ I am lucky enough to live in unit that has the ‘makings of a healthy home.’ I also don’t need to ask a LL to make changes for improving my lot. I know that many people live in homes that are quite different. I am sure you have all seen the worst examples of wet, damp, draughty homes that LLs have done little to alleviate. The children who live in these homes are unhealthy, miss school and fall behind in their educational achievements, thus re-emphasizing their position in society.
Imagine the damp walls and black mould, along with asthmatic kids. This is common, especially in the larger cities in NZ. Yes there is Government help these problems but the uptake still falls way behind the need to change these homes. Instead of telling LLs to ‘do the right thing,’ Mr Key, tell them that if they don’t they will be ‘obliged to.’ Maybe the health bill will retreat to Manageable levels for you. Hell, isn’t that enough to convert you to real fairness?