12 Jun 2016

Labour leader visits Te Puea Marae

6:01 pm on 12 June 2016

Labour Party leader Andrew Little has visited Te Puea Marae and says he is impressed with the work it is doing to help homeless people.

Te Puea Marae

Te Puea Marae Photo: RNZ / Shannon Haunui-Thompson

Te Puea Marae began offering shelter to the homeless last month and has since launched a support programme for those looking for help, called Manaaki Tangata.

Dozens of families have since made it their temporary home, with at least 54 families having sought shelter there. Many have since found new homes.

Andrew Little during caucus run 1.03.16

Andrew Little Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Mr Little said the marae was responding to a crisis, and doing a great job, but it was not a fix to the problem.

"And the only fix is that we've got to get these families into houses so they can get some stability and some security.

"And that's a role for the government agencies and the ministers heading them up, they've got to see that there is a real problem and work now to provide some long lasting solutions for these families."

Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett met with Te Puea Marae chairman Hurimoana Dennis on Friday, at an Auckland cafe.

In a statement, her office said the ministry would provide more "logistical assistance" to the marae but would not specify what it would be.

Ms Bennett said the marae had already received about $10,000 through Te Puni Kokiri.