Leggett wades into health row
Porirua mayor Nick Leggett has weighed into a stoush between two community organisations, asking the health and social development ministers to step in, too.
Pacific Health Services’ electricity was cut on Monday last week after a miscommunication between the service and provider Genesis Energy. Service staff said they were told it could be reconnected only with the permission of the Whanau Centre, which owns the building.
The Whanau Centre has asked the service to leave the long-time base at the end of November and the relationship between the two organisations has deteriorated quickly.
Pacific Health Services has said that, despite repeated requests, the Whanau Centre would not help it get the power reconnected.
Leggett has written to Health Minister Tony Ryall, calling on him to contact government funders of the Whanau Centre and ask them to direct management to reinstate the power.
‘‘I am sure you will agree with me that it is unacceptable for two Government-funded community entities providing public services to be in this situation,’’ he said.
‘‘Porirua people are entitled to a standard of excellence in the public services they receive in the community, and this situation is forcing the provider involved to fall short in its ability to deliver a standard that is acceptable.’’
Leggett sent a similar letter to Social Development Minister Paula Bennett.
Pacific Health Services, the Whanau Centre and Genesis Energy have different ideas about how the situation could be resolved.
Pacific Health Services chief executive Eleni Mason said staff had called Genesis more than once and been told the Whanau Centre needed to give permission for it to be reconnected.
Whanau Centre chief executive Liz Kelly said Genesis told her the electricity was cut at the request of Pacific Health Services, and it was the service that needed to request reconnection.
Genesis Energy spokesman Richard Gordon said it had followed Pacific Health Services’ instructions to disconnect the account and it was a simple matter of a phone call from Pacific Health Services to get it reconnected.
Mason said the Bedford Court offices were still open, albeit without power, and any patients who needed to be seen were being taken to a GP clinic nearby.
The service was working to get a secondstorey office space nearby up and running.
Nick Leggett: calls for ministerial input.