Minister Carmel Sepuloni defends emergency housing after Rotorua's new mayor Tania Tapsell hits out at 'MSD strip'

Rotorua's new mayor Tania Tapsell is calling for action on what used to be the city's "golden mile" of tourist motels but is now called "MSD strip". 

While Rotorua makes up 1.5 percent of the population it now has 10 percent of the emergency housing population.

Mayor Tapsell took a shot at the Government over its expectation for landlords to bring houses up to healthy homes standards while allowing vulnerable families to stay in unhealthy and sometimes unsafe emergency motels.

But Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni said the Government inherited a housing crisis and is committed to providing some form of accommodation. 

The Minister said the Government is working with the Council, various iwi and social services providers to resolve the emergency housing situation.

When questioned about the poor accommodation in some motels, Sepuloni said MSD doesn't have responsibility for the quality of motel accommodation; that's a regulation that happens at the Council level.

Around 10,000 New Zealanders are currently living in emergency housing and 4500 are children.

Watch the full interview above.