Dear Jacinda, Action On Crime in our City

Dear Prime Minister

The rise in crime and anti-social behaviour since COVID-19 struck is stark and confronting. We ask that you please take urgent action – to support recovery and retain our reputation as a safe city and country.

An increase in crime and antisocial behaviour is the last thing Auckland needs. Thousands of people live and come here daily – to work, study, shop, eat out and enjoy a wide range of entertainment. We can’t let crime put this at risk.

We have been calling for a coordinated, cross-government approach to deal with these issues, with three immediate actions identified:

• Increased police resourcing and presence on the street

• Better management of emergency housing
• Services for mental health and addiction

We have had no response to our requests.

In the interim, we continue to do what we can locally. We have security initiatives in place, such as CCTV, patrols, alert systems and preventive training with police. We are also increasing coordination across the city centre and fringe areas so there is greater visibility of people involved with crime who are moving around. But, despite the best efforts of everyone involved, this can’t be resolved just with local police and local agencies.

Furthermore, Auckland’s vibrant night-time economy, valued at around $1 billion a year, must be preserved. The majority of people behave well and they should not be penalised by those who do not. A vibrant nightlife is also important for life beyond border controls.

The New Zealand Herald’s series on Crime in the City is a stark reminder about issues that have emerged from COVID-19. Only the government is in the position to bring about a coordinated solution between the ministries of Health, Housing, Social Development and Police. Please can you bring quick, decisive action to keep our city safe and appealing for locals and visitors.

Yours sincerely

Viv Beck
HEART OF THE CITY

Mark Knoff-Thomas
NEWMARKET BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

Cheryl Adamson
PARNELL BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

Michael Richardson
KARANGAHAPE ROAD BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

Brent Kennedy
UPTOWN BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

PONSONBY BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

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