‘FEED ME, SEYMOUR’

The Tribune (NZ) - - ENVIRONMENT -

Lit­tle Shop col­lectibles are a sub­ver­sive mar­ket­ing tac­tic de­signed to by­pass adults and go di­rect to the lit­tle shop­pers.

Many chil­dren dili­gently col­lect the in­di­vid­u­ally wrapped, tiny items; with vary­ing de­grees of ob­ses­sion ev­ery time the oth­er­wise dreaded gro­cery shop­ping is done.

Sup­port­ive par­ents nur­ture the happy ob­ses­sion and or­gan­ise swap meets (some of which have be­come vi­o­lent af­fairs), or lit­ter face­book feeds with their de­sire to col­lect miss­ing pieces.

Some even pur­chase ac­ces­sories to go with them. Spend­ing money on gro­ceries and drag­ging the fam­ily through the su­per­mar­ket is now given a sil­ver lin­ing thanks to the ‘su­per mar­ket­ing’ of food­stuffs.

The next gen­er­a­tion’s brand loy­alty has been gifted wrapped in shiny pack­ets, and per­haps our chil­dren’s de­light might be worth the en­vi­ron­men­tal cost, the sub­con­scious ma­nip­u­la­tion of their de­vel­op­ing minds, and the hun­dreds of mini plas­tic gro­cery items mess­ing up kids bed­rooms.

One of the low­est forms of mar­ket­ing in my opin­ion.

Rachel Of­ford Palmer­ston North

WARMTH OR RENT

The first Mon­day in Oc­to­ber has been des­ig­nated as In­ter­na­tional Ten­ants Day/ UN Habi­tat Day.

This year the theme is on hous­ing and energy.

Ev­ery house­holder’s bud­get is greatly af­fected by the costs of energy, and in New Zealand house­holds spend in­creas­ingly more on energy.

Poor hous­ing con­di­tions, such as the in­abil­ity to prop­erly heat the home can have a neg­a­tive im­pact on a ten­ant’s health and well-be­ing.

The Manawatu Ten­ants Union has no­ticed an in­crease in the num­ber of ten­ants fac­ing the de­ci­sion to ei­ther pay their power bill or their rent dur­ing the win­ter months.

Cold in­door tem­per­a­tures are de­ter­mined by a com­bi­na­tion of fac­tors. Energy in­ef­fi­cient build­ing de­sign can make homes dif­fi­cult to heat.

More­over, low house­hold in­coˆme and high energy prices ex­ac­er­bate heat­ing af­ford­abil­ity. Fuel poverty is a recog­nised so­cial prob­lem around the world.

It should be noted that New Zealand has some of the cold­est houses in the de­vel­oped world.

Kevin Reilly. Manawatu Ten­ants Union

SMOKE-FREE CARS

Manawatu Can­cer So­ci­ety en­dorses the Palmer­ston North Par­ents Cen­tre call­ing for leg­is­la­tion ban­ning smok­ing in cars car­ry­ing chil­dren.

While smok­ers may ad­vo­cate for their right to smoke, our chil­dren have the right to breathe clean air that won’t com­pro­mise their health.

Chil­dren are par­tic­u­larly vul­ner­a­ble to sec­ond­hand smoke due to their smaller lungs, higher res­pi­ra­tory rates and im­ma­ture im­mune sys­tems.

Chil­dren and teenagers whose par­ents and care­givers smoke are more likely to be­come smok­ers them­selves.

The move to ban smok­ing in our cars sends a clear mes­sage that sec­ond-hand smoke is hurt­ing our chil­dren.

Let us speak up for our chil­dren who are not in a po­si­tion to speak for them­selves, and cre­ate a safer smoke­free en­vi­ron­ment for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

Kerry Hoc­quard Manawatu Can­cer So­ci­ety, com­mu­nity health ad­vo­cate

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