Chlöe Swarbrick puts pressure on PM Christopher Luxon to resign if children made homeless over Kāinga Ora policies

  • 19/03/2024

New Green Party co-leader Chlöe Swarbrick's putting pressure on the Prime Minister to resign if any children are made homeless due to his Government's Kāinga Ora policies.

The Government on Monday announced it was taking a tougher stance on unruly Kāinga Ora tenants, including evictions. 

Swarbrick questioned Christopher Luxon in the House on Tuesday about the impact on children living in Kāinga Ora housing - but failed to get a commitment on if he'd put his job on the line.

"Well, we don't actually want to see KO tenants being evicted from KO housing but actually the parents are adults and they have a choice to make about whether they want to meet their obligations and their responsibilities," Luxon said.

Swarbrick pushed again, asking: "Will he resign if any children are made homeless as a result of his Government's policies?"

The follow-up was met with groans from the House.

"There are children that are growing up in motels today that are living on floors of family or friends or in community housing provider housing who actually want a shot and their families want a shot at being able to get into the state house," Luxon responded.

"The problem today is that there is 24,000 people on a state house waitlist which went up four or five times under the previous Government. There are neighbours in those KO communities who are getting abused and I'm sorry but we're standing up for those folk and saying to them 'there are rights and responsibilities in this country'." 

The Greens have previously come out against the policy, with housing spokesperson Tamatha Paul calling it "particularly cruel" for the Government to look at punishing state housing tenants for struggling to pay rent.