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More homeless on the way: opposition

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 9/05/2016

Labour's Phil Twyford says the announcement is the inevitable consequence of the government's failure to address the housing shortage. © Getty Images Labour's Phil Twyford says the announcement is the inevitable consequence of the government's failure to address the housing shortage. The government's promise to provide more emergency housing won't do anything to stem the growing tide of homeless people, opposition parties say.

Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett on Monday announced $41.1 million funding over the next four years for emergency housing and grants.

"Emergency housing provides an essential safety net for people in crisis, and is an opportunity to intervene and support families with complex needs," she said.

It's the first time the government will have funded emergency housing places.

At the moment, places like the Wellington Night Shelter rely on grants from local councils and charitable trusts, along with their own fundraising, to provide beds for the homeless.

Labour's Phil Twyford says the announcement is the inevitable consequence of the government's failure to address the housing shortage.

"You just have to walk through the centre of our main cities to see the rise in homelessness," he said.

"There are thousands of desperate families ... and the government is running state housing and stripping it of its resources."

The Greens say emergency housing doesn't address the underlying causes of Auckland's crisis.

"It's the people who have the least who are affected the most," said Marama Davidson.

"The government keeps offering up piecemeal solutions."

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