Housing New Zealand is partnering with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to promote safety around household chemicals.
“As the country’s largest landlord with more than 64,000 properties, and around 182,000 people living in our homes, Housing New Zealand has an important role to play in helping people in New Zealand stay safe around the home,” Chief Operating Officer Paul Commons says.
“We’re really pleased to be able to support the important work the Environmental Protection Agency does in promoting awareness of how to keep poisons and household chemicals out of reach of children, so we’re doing all we can to support their efforts.”
EPA Chief Executive Dr Allan Freeth says the EPA began working with Housing New Zealand earlier this year, as part of its drive to raise awareness around safety in the home.
“We’re always looking at ways we can promote awareness, and it made sense to use the country’s largest landlord to help us spread the message,” he says.
“Many household chemicals we use every day are considered ‘hazardous substances’. Garden sprays, cleaning products, fuels and even cosmetics can all be dangerous if they are not used or stored carefully. Therefore, the importance of good education around use and storage of household chemicals cannot be overstated,” he says.
“Our campaign is based around the messages ‘Put it up’ or ‘Lock it Up’. We encourage everyone to store chemicals out of reach and out of sight, read labels, and always follow manufacturers’ instructions on products.”
Dr Freeth says a big part of EPA’s partnership involves supporting Housing New Zealand at its numerous community events and initiatives.
“We’ve supported Housing New Zealand at a range of events, including community barbecues and stalls, the recent Healthy in the Hutt event, and contributing messaging and articles to their popular tenant newsletter Close to Home.”
“Reminding people to wear protective clothing like gloves and goggles, keep products in the containers they’re sold in, and never mix products together are among other key safety messages we’ve promoted wherever we can to Housing New Zealand tenants and the wider public.”
Dr Freeth said EPA’s recently introduced ‘Safer Homes’ Facebook page often carries Housing New Zealand-related articles and EPA makes a point of following and retweeting Housing New Zealand messaging on its Twitter account.