Disruptive Thinking across the Health System: Empowering People to Age Well

Two International experts are coming to the BOP District Health Board to share their latest research on the impact of ageing and how to empower populations to age well.

Prof Carol Jagger is the AXA Chair in Epidemiology of Ageing in Newcastle

Prof Ngaire Kerse is recognised as an international expert in maximising health for older people, falls and older people, and the impact of physical activity on development of disability

Bookings are essential before Friday 7 December

Download more information here.


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Submit to Healthy Homes Standards

the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development is seeking submissions on Healthy Housing Standards to make rental properties healthier warmer and drier. Read about this process.

This link has the background, the discussion document on standards and how to give feedback – you can use their online survey and choose which bits you want to focus on.

Download and read a Submission to Healthy Homes Standards –  from the Healthy Homes Initiative.  

The writer is happy for people to copy and paste from their submission or support their submission.

Consultation closes 22 October.

Government reforms & consultations

Current consultations

  • The Welfare Expert Advisory Group is consulting on the future of the welfare system (consultation closes 9 November). More information is available here.
  • The Government has released a discussion document on proposed standards to create warmer, drier rental homes (the healthy homes standards), following the passing of the Healthy Homes Guarantee Act in December 2017. A copy of the discussion document and a summary of the proposed standards are available here. Submissions are open until 6pm on Monday 22 October 2018.
  • The Government has announced a set of proposals aimed at improving renting conditions.The discussion document and a link to an online submission survey are available here. Consultation closes at 5pm, 21 October 2018.Other reforms to note
  • The Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector has announced a review of the Charities Act 2005, for more information click here.
  • The Tax Working Group has released its interim report. Final recommendations are due February 2019. For more information click here.
  • The Local Government (Community Well-being) Amendment Bill has had its first reading in Parliament. This Bill seeks to restore four aspects of community wellbeing in legislation (social, economic, environmental and cultural). For more information click here. 
  • Formal submissions have closed for the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction. In a recent update the Inquiry thanked everyone who submitted, they received around 5500 submissions and over 2000 people attended 26 public meetings. They have now moved on to the deliberation stage, with their report due 31 October 2018. For more information click here.
  • The Government is considering the establishment of a sector-level bargaining system. This would enable unions and employers to develop Fair Pay Agreements that set minimum terms and conditions for all workers in an entire industry or occupation.The Government has established the Fair Pay Agreement Working Group to make recommendations on the design of this system. The Working Group is due to report back with its recommendations by November 2018. For more information click here.
  • The Government has announced a review of the New Zealand Health and Disability Sector. An interim report is due by July 2019, and a final report by 31 January 2020. For more information click here.
  • Treasury is working on a “Living Standards Framework” for policy. Consultation has closed on a proposed Living Standards Dashboard to support the application of the Living Standards Framework to policy issues. More information can be found here.
  • The Government is reviewing the schooling system. Consultation has closed and the taskforce appointed to carry out the review is due to report back by 9 November 2018. More information is here. 

The severe under-funding of the community sector cannot continue

The community sector is an essential part of a healthy thriving society. From housing and health to emergency support and everything in-between, the community sector plays a critical role in individual family, whānau and community wellbeing.

But many in the community sector are operating under severe financial strain. And this strain is having a real impact on the ability of community organisations to meet the needs of people in their community.

The funding issue is critical and one that we’re pushing. Our approach to tackling the issue is twofold. First we talk with Government about the issues, and we will keep the pressure on until we see change. But another strand of work is crucial. And that’s growing understanding about the community sector, both with decision-makers, and the public. When people understand what the community sector does and its important role, it helps to increase pressure for change – and it makes it harder for politicians to turn away and ignore the funding crisis. We’re currently exploring how we can do this. But one thing is certain, the severe underfunding of the community sector cannot continue.

SociaLink is a member of Community Networks Aotearoa (CNA), they are the umbrella organisation for local community networks throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. Our goal is to empower and strengthen the community sector by supporting community networks across Aotearoa.

Recently we heard that Oranga Tamariki social workers and Government have reached a pay equity settlement. This is wonderful news, the contribution of social workers cannot be overstated. However, my mind turns to social workers in the NGO sector, with many NGOs struggling to get by, the risk is that the pay of their social workers (and indeed others!) will slip further and further behind, making it hard for the sector to retain much needed people.

A solution must be found.