The Parnell Business Association has called on the Government to do more to address the sharp rise in crime and disorderly behaviour associated with Kāinga Ora tenants in the area.
In a formal letter presented to Housing Minister Chris Bishop and former Prime Minister Sir Bill English, Parnell Business Association general manager Cheryl Adamson outlines a spate of unruly and criminal behaviour caused by tenants living in the Craycroft and Bedford apartments.
“The intertwining issues of housing, mental health and addiction support, police resource scarcity, and the absence of deterrents for criminal behaviour present a challenging landscape,” Adamson said.
“With a new government in place, and an independent review underway we need to begin addressing these problems. A practical first step would be to implement specific on-site tenant management for each site, that goes beyond the current infrequent and very intermittent oversight. Such an approach would not only aid in managing recidivist behaviour, which is currently unchecked, but also provide Kāinga Ora with crucial insights.”
The open letter calls on English to include full time on-site facility management in the independent review he is currently conducting of Kāinga Ora.
The absence of on-site security previously provided by Kāinga Ora has correlated with an uptick in criminal offences.
Notably, over 40 incidents were recorded in November and December alone, ranging from robbery to unauthorised entry into the a power control room, resulting in power outages in Parnell Rise.
The Association stresses the importance of positive public sentiment in tackling the country’s housing crisis. They assert that Kāinga Ora must be held accountable for managing its assets, facilities, and residents. This accountability should be an integral part of the ongoing review.
The request from the Parnell Business Association includes the consideration of facility management and tenant-community relationship management in the recommendations for improving Kāinga Ora’s role.
The Association has garnered support from Cabinet Minister and MP for Epsom, David Seymour, who advocates for the protection of local businesses.
“No one should live in fear of losing their hard-earned achievements overnight,” Seymour said.
“It’s crucial to hold those responsible for community damage accountable, including Kāinga Ora, when their tenants are involved,” says Seymour.
While awaiting the results of the independent review, the Parnell Business Association remains committed to its initiatives, including continued investment in CCTV and hired security.
The following incidents directly related to residents of Kāinga Ora’s Craycroft/Bedford apartments were recorded in November and December 2023:
Ignoring a trespass x 4
E-Scooter Theft x 2
Shoplifting x 3
Willful damage x 2
Stolen VOI approx. 20 visits
Police man hunt for resident
Luggage theft from lockers in a Parnell hotel
Interference with vehicles
Turning off power to Parnell Rise via breaking into a Power Control Room
Break & Entering x 2
Intimidating Behaviour – regularly
Disorderly behaviour – regularly
Begging – every day A notable incident at a Parnell Business over Christmas involved thefts totaling over $50,000, including electronics, kitchen appliances, and luxury items, which were simply carried across the road or transported in wheelie bins.