Blog & media

Response to Christchurch Youth Council question

My response to a question from the Christchurch Youth Council ahead of their Youth Focus Q&A event on 27 September 2016:

Q: If elected how will you ensure young people are engaged? (200 words): 
A: If elected I will be looking to establish a mentoring relationship with a young person within my ward who would like to explore local government and civic leadership. This is a contribution to youth engagement I can make at a personal level, and is intended to be a learning exercise for me as well as the young person.

I will be a strong supporter of initiatives that my local Community Board already has underway, such as resourcing local organisations that work with young people, and also directly funding (and hearing feedback from) young people seeking assistance to participate in cultural and sporting activities.

It is also important that the Community Board considers young people when making local decisions and when advocating for the community with the City Council. The best way to do this is through relationship, and I believe we can strengthen relationships and increase youth participation with the Community Board – for example including young people in community leaders’ forums; ensuring that information about Board agendas, decisions, and funding opportunities are accessible; and that young people know how to engage with Council staff and Board members.

Youth Focus response

Response to Nor’West News question

During September 2016 Papanui Ward candidates were asked the following question by the Nor’West News:

Q: What should be done about the traffic congestion in the ward, particularly along roads like Main North Rd, Cranford St and Papanui Rd? Is rail an option that should be pursued? (limit: 100 words)

My answer was published in the 20 September edition:

A: Reduction of traffic congestion has been a priority for the current Shirley-Papanui Community Board, and if elected I will support continued work in this area. We can expect construction of the Northern Corridor to begin soon – this project will have a massive impact on traffic flows, and the new Papanui-Innes Community Board will need to continue to work with affected residents. Rail as a commuter option was assessed unfavourably in 2014, but alternative public transport options such as light rail need to be considered, as well as the Board supporting ongoing work on cycleways and fine-tuning of the bus network.

NorWest News 20 Sep 16

Youth Focus Q&A events are coming up in Christchurch

Christchurch Youth Council supported by Youth Voice Canterbury are holding two Local Election Q + A events during the 2016 local body elections.

Candidates at the WEST event (5pm Mon 26 Sep) are running in the following Wards:
– Fendalton-Waimairi-Harewood
– Halswell-Hornby-Riccarton
– Spreydon-Cashmere
– Heathcote-Central-Linwood

Candidates at the EAST & MAYORAL event (5pm Tue 27 Sep) are running in the following Wards:
– Papanui-Innes
– Coastal-Burwood
– Banks Peninsula
– Candidates running for Mayor

The links above will allow you to click through to Facebook events with full details.

WEST Invite East Invite

Disclaimer: I will be speaking at the East & Mayoral event on 27 Sep, but I’m not involved in organising these events. I’m publicising them because youth participation is important to me. If you have any questions or want more information, please contact the organisers via their Facebook page.

Statement for the Christchurch Mail

A brief, 50-word statement about the importance of community boards and what you see as the most pressing issue for your area:

Community Boards represent, advocate for, and make decisions about their local community. A significant issue for the Papanui-Innes Board will be the need to work collaboratively with neighbouring boards where communities such as Belfast and St Albans will be split between multiple board areas following the representation review.

Bio and vision for The Migrant Times

In response to a request from The Migrant Times for a short bio and my vision for my ward:

Bio (35 words): 
I have a background in the technology sector, and work for Te Ora Hou Ōtautahi, where I manage the school attendance service. I have chaired my local school board and served with other community organizations.

Vision for Papanui Ward (35 words): 
My vision for Papanui Ward is:
– A connected community where people know and care for each other.
– Building on the great work of the Shirley-Papanui board, especially with social issues, community safety, and transport/traffic.

Statement for the St Albans News

Simon’s statement for the St Albans News, in response to the question “what makes you the best person to represent the St Albans area on the Papanui Innes community board for the next three years?“:

I value a connected community that cares for all of its members, and am passionate about making a contribution. Following the ward boundary changes, a key issue for St Albans is the need for three Community Boards to work collaboratively to effectively represent and engage with the community. As the manager of the school attendance service at Te Ora Hou Ōtautahi, I am actively involved in a number of collaborative initiatives, and can bring this experience to the Papanui-Innes Community Board.

Continue reading “Statement for the St Albans News”

Response to questions from Avon-Ōtākaro Network

In August 2016, the Avon-Ōtākaro Network (AvON) sought replies from local body candidates to 4 questions about the future of the red zone lands that run from the Avon Loop in the CBD to Southshore along the length of the lower Ōtākaro/Avon River. See AvON’s website for a full report. Simon’s responses were:

Question 1: Do you support a multipurpose city-to-sea River Park that meets diverse community needs eg for environmental regeneration and restoration; recognition of cultural & community heritage; play, recreation and sport; food production; arts and entertainment; learning, training, employment, small business and tourism? 
A: I am personally supportive. The role of a Community Board is to represent, and advocate for, the interests of its community, and to that end I will ensure the views of the Papanui-Innes community are reflected, should the Community Board have a role in relation to future use of the red zone.

Continue reading “Response to questions from Avon-Ōtākaro Network”