Displaced Hawke’s Bay families wonder where to turn next

Displaced families in Hawke’s Bay say they’re wondering where to turn next after a month in temporary accommodation.

More than 1000 homes are still yellow and red-stickered following the cyclone, and local leaders are seeking clarity from Government agencies.

The Waipatu Marae has become a refuge; a month on from Cyclone Gabrielle, there are still 25 whānau members living at the marae.

Tane Tomoana has been assisting whānau with accommodation since the cyclone and said they lacked clear direction for the next steps.

“We actually have struggled to pin down who actually is responsible for how we do move on from here and there has been no consistent contact with any agency over any of this,” Tomoana said.

Hawke's Bay has 106 red stickered homes and 1109 yellow. Hastings has the majority with 99 red and 702 yellow stickered homes.

Figures from National Emergency Management Agency show the number of homes affected by Cyclone Gabrielle.

  • Northland – 42 red, 57 yellow (accurate as of 10 March)
  • Auckland – 666 red, 2300 yellow (accurate as of 13 March)
  • Waikato – 7 red, 15 yellow (accurate as of 9 March)
  • Thames-Coromandel – 13 red, 25 yellow (accurate as of 9 March)
  • Tairāwhiti – 11 red, 170 yellow (accurate as of 27 February)
  • Hawke’s Bay – 106 red, 1087 yellow (accurate as of 13 March)
  • Tararua – 6 red, 13 yellow (accurate as of 28 February)
  • Wairarapa – 0 red, 5 yellow (accurate as of 9 March)

The Government's temporary accommodation service (TAS), which kicks in after the immediate emergency response, has 350 Hawke's Bay families registered for support. So far, they've housed 83 of them.

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Steve Watson said he encourages families to reach out to TAS.

“TAS is provided to ensure people have medium to longer-term solutions while their homes are being repaired by a natural disaster, it is very different from emergency homes and shelter which is the first thing provided after a major disaster.

“I hope families keep coming forward and keep contacting TAS, keep contacting us through the website and we will get back to them, it's not an immediate service and our people are very busy, but we are committed to providing support for everybody,” Watson said.


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