Opinion: Duncan Webb’s first days at the Beehive

NEW JOB: Christchurch Central MP Duncan Webb getting a Parliamentary briefing before his first day at work.

New Christchurch Central MP Duncan Webb may be busy finding his way around his new office in Wellington but the former lawyer has issues he wants to tackle in his electorate

I am very proud and excited to be the new member of parliament for Christchurch Central.

The city has huge opportunities ahead of it and I am looking forward to being part of seizing them.

I think there are three simple things we need to keep in mind when ensuring that the city moves in the right direction: People, homes, and incomes – and they are all closely related.

We want to make sure that all of our neighbourhoods and communities are great places to live.

This will mean working at every level to ensure they are safe and able to be enjoyed by everyone.

Some things need to be addressed by central Government – like providing a comprehensive solution for those who are without a home of any kind.

Others will require working with the city council – like ensuring that community hubs and shopping centres are attractive, accessible and usable.

Of course in the central city, we need to complete the people-focussed facilities like the library and the metro sports facility.

Homes are a really significant issue in Christchurch, though perhaps in a different kind of way than elsewhere.

One thing I would love to see and encourage is genuinely affordable homes within the inner city for a mix of young people, families and older people.

That will be essential to making the city vibrant and successful.

Great public parks, spaces and facilities will assist with this – as will the new retail and hospitality projects.

Our houses need to be of a good quality. The first earthquake was now more than seven years ago, but many houses are not repaired, or have been repaired poorly.

I know how stressful this can be, so I look forward to advocating for a prompt settlement of outstanding EQC and insurance claims and defective repairs being addressed properly.

Connected to this is ensuring that the city is a great place to work and do business. We need to do this by ensuring that our city has great infrastructure, and that the people who live here have the knowledge and skills needed.

This will be important to make sure we have jobs and prosperous businesses that provide a good income to everyone.

I know it’s going to be a huge challenge being the MP for Christchurch Central, and I am really looking forward to it.

I am available to discuss any issues that you may be having – just email me at Duncan.Webb@parliament.govt.nz