Will Wellington MPs turn out for #ParkUp Parliament?
The growing concern around the rise in numbers of families sleeping in cars and garages has inspired a group of Wellingtonians to join the Park Up For Homes movement and organise a #Parkup Parliament on Saturday June 25 at the Wellington Cathedral of St Paul.
The group will be parking up for a night in inner city Wellington to show solidarity with those doing it rough.
Once again, the #Parkup officials are extending the invite not only to the larger community, but also to local MPs, calling upon them to show up and spend a chilly night in their cars and experience what is a stark reality for a growing number of families for months on end.
#Parkup Parliament organiser Lydia Rillstone says homelessness is a growing problem in New Zealand, having increased by 116% over the past two years.
"We stand together peacefully to support the thousands affected nationwide, including children. New Zealand should be doing a much better job at addressing this. Those of us who are planning to park up nearby Parliament are emphasising that parties need to work together urgently on this, it is not just an Auckland issue," says Rillstone.
Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) housing spokesperson Alan Johnson says he is encouraged so many Kiwis do care and he hopes the Government does too.
"Homelessness has been a growing problem for perhaps ten years and it will take another ten years to solve. To address these problems will take billions of dollars over the next decade and we need all the main political parties to commit to doing this," says Johnson.
#Parkup Parliament will be a peaceful, family-friendly demonstration, featuring guest speakers, including Professor Philippa Howden-Chapman, a leading academic on housing issues and author of Home truths: Confronting New Zealand's housing crisis. There will also be story-time for children, live music and a chance for sharing stories, poetry and speeches, as well as an open mic opportunity. For those who wish to bring along an instrument and contribute to the line-up please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more news and to RSVP along with other attendees, visit the Facebook event page.