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Thursday, April 21, 2011

New Zealand : Tough winter predicted for many quake city residents

Article from Radio New Zealand :

" Increasing unemployment, overcrowding and damp, damaged homes could mean a "dreadful winter" for many in Christchurch, a Canterbury District Health Board member says.

Health services in the quake-stricken city are becoming stretched to treat growing numbers of people with influenza and other illnesses.

Health board member Andrew Dickerson told Radio New Zealand's Nine to Noon programme he is very worried about the vulnerable members of the community, such as the elderly and the disabled.

"Particularly in the eastern suburbs where people are living in severely damaged homes, homes that are made damp by the liquefaction, overcrowding conditions with many families now sharing, we're seeing increasing unemployment, a high level of anxiety out there."

Mr Dickerson says when all those factors combine with cold weather vulnerable people, including those in poverty or who have chronic health conditions, face a very difficult situation."

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