May 06, 2020
Boarding houses not fit for kaumatua
The head of the South Auckland Māori wardens says the COVID-19 pandemic is exposing the dire conditions many kaumatua and kuia are living in.
The wardens have been assisting efforts to distribute hygiene and food packs to low-income households.
Thomas Henry says that also involves home deliveries to those who can’t make it to the marae or other distribution centres.
They’ve tried to move some kaumatua who have been placed in substandard boarding houses.
“They’re getting put into where we’ve got a lot of mental health, we’ve got a lot of drug issues, we’ve got a lot of alcohol issues – I wouldn’t want my parents to be staying in a place like that,” he says.
Maori wardens are also working with shops in the area, discouraging theft and encouraging people to maintain social distancing and safe shopping requirements.
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