HOUS­ING HUFFLE

The Tribune (NZ) - - OPINION -

The chick­ens have come home to roost for the govern­ment’s hous­ing poli­cies by giv­ing tax­payer cash in­cen­tives to ten­ants on the wait­ing list to move to the provinces. It beg­gars be­lief. The present rental hous­ing cri­sis is not just an Auck­land is­sue, it is a na­tion-wide prob­lem. Rob­bing Peter to pay Paul is not go­ing to cut it.

The govern­ment’s hous­ing poli­cies have been an ab­ject fail­ure. They ap­pear to have no ideas or vi­sion for af­ford­able rental ac­com­mo­da­tion sup­ply.

In to­day’s New Zealand we have wit­nessed de­ci­sions which have en­dan­gered well es­tab­lished so­cial hous­ing sys­tems, such as Hous­ing New Zealand and those re­main­ing lo­cal coun­cils who sup­port their com­mu­nity on hous­ing is­sues.

The min­is­ter can point the blame, but it is her govern­ment’s hous­ing poli­cies which have cre­ated the cri­sis in the rental hous­ing mar­ket.

The coun­try needs more ef­fec­tive po­lices.

New Zealan­ders were proud of their hous­ing sys­tem. Once.

Kevin Reilly Manawatu Ten­ants Union

PET PEEVES SORTED

Hav­ing pets is not cheap es­pe­cially when it comes to tak­ing them to the Vet. Con­sul­ta­tion fees vary from clinic to clinic but ex­pect to pay about $50. Then there’s the cost of med­i­ca­tion, which can be ex­pen­sive. Then when med­i­ca­tion is pre­scribed you may be in for a shock as ve­teri­nar­ian med­i­ca­tions can be very ex­pen­sive.

Re­cently, I was made aware of how ex­pen­sive and how much the same med­i­ca­tion can vary be­tween vet clin­ics.

I have a re­peat for an eye-drop lotion for one of my dogs and was told that the small 10ml bot­tle was now just over $90.

A cou­ple of months pre­vi­ously it had been $60. I was told that the whole­sale price had in­creased.

At home, I got onto the in­ter­net and dis­cov­ered that I could get the same in NZ by mail or­der for $32 but had to have a pre­scrip­tion from my vet to be able to pur­chase.I checked two other vet clin­ics to see what their retail prices were. One was $45, the other $64.40, both well un­der $93.

Now vets must hon­our re­quests for writ­ten au­tho­ri­sa­tions in lieu of dis­pens­ing. So, I re­turned the un­used med­i­ca­tion to the clinic, ob­tained a re­fund, and paid $15 for a pre­scrip­tion which al­lowed me to buy the larger 20ml bot­tle on­line for $53 – to­tal out­lay $68 for twice as much medicine.

When you take a pet to your vet and med­i­ca­tions are rec­om­mended, ask what the med­i­ca­tion is called, how long it will be re­quired, the pos­si­bil­ity of re­peats, what the costs are, and ask for a pre­scrip­tion with as many re­peats as pos­si­ble.

Then, see what the on­line prices are and place an or­der with your credit card. The orig­i­nal pre­scrip­tion must be mailed to the vets who of­fer this ser­vice.

There are lots of el­derly peo­ple who strug­gle fi­nan­cially to main­tain their an­i­mal com­pan­ions and will go with­out them­selves, to en­sure the wel­fare of their pets.

Any sav­ings are great for them and their pets.

Wally Richards Palmer­ston North WRITE TO US The Trib­ute wel­comes let­ters. They should not ex­ceed 250 words and must carry a gen­uine name, home ad­dress and day­time phone num­ber. Pref­er­ence is given to let­ters ex­clu­sive to The Tribune. Email tribune@msl.co.nz or posted to PO Box 3, Palmer­ston North to be re­ceived by 4pm on the Thurs­day prior to pub­li­ca­tion.

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