Media release from Pomare Community
Members of the Pomare community will this weekend move to occupy the site of their demolished homes as a further protest at Housing New Zealand’s failure to act on their housing concerns.
Last week hundreds of residents and supporters attended a community rally to highlight the loss of their community and the community’s need for state housing.
From Saturday morning community members will move into tents erected on the demolition site surrounded by headstones and crosses representing the lost houses. Each headstone or cross shows the time the house had been lived in by local families, with some families being moved from houses they have lived in for over 40 years.
Korina Haua, Tolly Jackson and Yvonne Kapua lived next door to each other in Pomare for more than 30 years before being moved by Housing NZ. The three women are missing the support of their long term neighbours “We all looked after each other. I feel like I’ve moved from a community to a street where I don’t know anyone. We just want to be allowed to come back to Pomare when the redevelopment is done” said Ms Haua.
“This is not just about Pomare,” said community spokesperson Dina Awarau. “The same thing is happening in Glen Innes and it will be other communities next. Many low income families are already struggling to get affordable housing and Housing NZ selling land to private developers is only going to make that worse”.
Housing NZ called for tenders this week for developers to deliver a mix of private housing, social housing and corporation housing in Pomare with a maximum of 12 of the 72 proposed new homes to be owned by Housing NZ.
“This is asset sales by another name” said Ms Awarau. “If the National government get voted back in, low income families will end up living under the bridge”.
Who? Pomare Community Voice
What? Occupy Pomare
Where? Farmer Crescent, adjacent to Taita Drive intersection.
When? From 9am Saturday, 19 November 2011