Those needing help with housing urged to get in touch with Work and Income
15 December 2016.
“The holiday season is something we all look forward to, but I also know it can be a particularly stressful time for those in need of a place to stay,” says Ministry of Social Development Deputy Chief Executive for Housing Scott Gallacher.
“I’d urge anyone who knows that they’ll be needing help over the holidays to get in touch with us as soon as possible so that we can look at the ways we can assist. ”
“We can provide budgeting advice and assist with rent arrears to help people stay where they are. We can help people secure private rentals by paying rent in advance and bond, and by assisting with moving costs.
“For those looking to move out of Auckland we can consider the ‘relocating from Auckland’ support package.
“Our ultimate goal is to support people into long-term, sustainable housing however, support is available to help people who need temporary accommodation while we look for those longer-term options.
“We know that commercial accommodation is often busy during holiday periods and we’ll be working with those currently staying there to help find them alternative accommodation if needed.
“We’re also liaising with moteliers locally where we know there may be an issue and will work to support any affected people.
“The Ministry is also focused on increasing the supply of both emergency and social housing.
“Earlier this week we released our Purchasing Strategy. This is the Ministry’s driving document for us to be able to shape the social housing market and meet demand.
"We have signalled that we will be working to secure another 3,800 social housing places by 2019/20, almost half of which need to be one-bedroom places. We’ve also got a further 2,600 places contracted or close to it. That’s more than 6,400 new places for people and families in need.
“Whilst we have a clear focus on providing more permanent social housing, we also need to continue to ensure that there is emergency housing for those who need it.
“That’s why in October we invited providers to partner with us to increase that supply. Nationally we’re looking to secure another 1,400 emergency housing places for people in desperate need, with 600 of these places in Auckland.
“The extra places will be delivered in a range of ways. They may come from using vacant crown properties, leasing and purchasing properties such as motels, and in areas of high demand such as Auckland, building new places.
“We’re supporting these providers with a rental subsidy and funding for tenancy management and support services to help move those in need into sustainable accommodation.
“It’s an ambitious goal but we’re focused on delivering theses extra places. With both short-term and longer-term policies in play we’re in a good place to make sure we can help those families most in need.”
People can access assistance at their nearest Work and Income office or over the phone on 0800 559 009
The emergency housing Invitation to Partner (ITP) is open until 6 October 2019 and can be found here
The Ministry’s 2016 Social Housing purchasing Strategy can be found here
You can read the Press release about this Strategy here