Da Gangs, Da Gangs
Housing NZ wins fight to evict gang families
Housing New Zealand's ability to get rid of troublesome tenants quickly has been strengthened after it won a second court battle to evict families with gang links. But the group of women who live in Farmer Cres in Pomare, the Hutt Valley, are still refusing to budge. In March, five women who have partners in the Mongrel Mob were the first in the country to be issued 90-day eviction notices after a woman moved out of her state house, saying she had been terrorised by gang members. Armed police later raided houses in the street, arresting more than 10 people. Three of the women in Farmer Cres had since lost their battle in the Tenancy Tribunal and yesterday they had a legal aid-funded appeal against eviction thrown out in Lower Hutt District Court. Two of the original group of five women have left the street. Chief executive Lesley McTurk said Housing NZ was taking a tougher stance on "severe antisocial behaviour" in order to protect the community. The eviction notices sidestepped the tribunal, where cases often failed because witnesses were too intimidated to testify. More than 28 eviction notices had been issued since March, many for antisocial behaviour.
How to deal with gang member tenants? No one likes ’em, bloody gypsies, they steal and rob chickens from the neighborhood and intimidate people so let’s move them into shipping containers. Now while many may agree with that statement, is this really the best solution? Where do they go? Where do they move if they can’t get a rental from Housing NZ? What’s the point of initializing a policy to throw all gang members out of Housing NZ properties, doesn’t that just alienate these people even further and the hell hole they are all forced to cram into sounds like the perfect conditions for a new social tumor.
Punishing the women and children for having gang member partners just seems so needlessly puritanical and the strategy behind it, to punish, looks like it will only make the situation for those families even more dangerous.
No one should live with intimidation, but no one should live with persecution either.