Marja Lubeck describes herself as hard-working, and is an experienced negotiator. She says she would be a strong advocate for Rodney in Parliament and will be dedicated to improving the lives of every person in the electorate. Many New Zealanders cannot make ends meet no matter how many hours they put in and there should be fair policies that allow hard-working people to get ahead, she says. As a qualified lawyer and the lead advocate in negotiations with the airlines that operate out of New Zealand, Marja has settled many large-scale collective agreements for hard-working people. Marja believes this election is about priorities, and New Zealand needs to deal with inequality, the housing crisis and the under-funding in crucial areas like health, education and infrastructure. There is a clear choice for voters. A choice between fairness and inclusion or deepening inequality and division. Marja is a proud New Zealander and a proud immigrant. She arrived in New Zealand in 1989 and has lived in Rodney since 2006 with her husband Shane and son Max. She urges voters to vote for fairness, hope, optimism and a New Zealand where everyone shares in prosperity.
What is the biggest issue facing Rodney?
Housing affordability and transport.
How will you and your party address local housing issues?
Labour will crack down on speculators, spur the construction of affordable homes and provide support for those in need (improve rental standards, stop the state house sell off).
Is Rodney being well served by the health system as the district expands?
Labour will reverse the $1.7billion cuts to our healthcare system. Increased funding to DHBs will help provide north Rodney with better access to 24-hour medical (emergency) care and local day surgeries.
Where do you stand on immigration?
I migrated here in 1989 from Holland and fell in love with the Kiwi way of life, but Auckland is bursting at the seams. Infrastructure has not kept up with the growth and we need a breather. Labour will reduce net migration levels and focus on skilled immigrants, while improving the infrastructure and training more New Zealanders to fill skills shortages.
What are the biggest environmental challenges and how will you address them?
Especially in northern Rodney, water quality is a major concern. With the Mahurangi River running through our beautiful Rodney town of Warkworth, it is so important for us to preserve its health and make sure that our kids can continue to enjoy it. Labour will set strong nationwide freshwater quality standards. Our National Policy Statement will put a halt to our worsening water quality and restore our rivers and lakes to a swimmable condition.
What is uppermost in your mind when it comes to local educational needs?
Labour will provide students with a school leavers’ toolkit – a programme that will complement our school curriculum to give our kids the opportunity to develop the practical skills (like a driver’s licence, budgeting skills, first aid) they need to thrive in their adult lives. Add to this the three years free post-secondary school education and we are setting our kids up to be the best they can be.
Are there any particular law and order issues that you think need to be tackled?
NZ has experienced a sharp spike in crime – since August 2014, burglaries are up 32 per cent, assaults are up 8 per cent, thefts are up 3 per cent, and robberies are up a staggering 66 per cent. Labour will restore the funding to our police force and hire an additional 1000 police to ensure that our communities are safer.
How will Labour ensure that there will be enough jobs in Rodney to match growth?
Labour has established the Future of Work Commission to look at the changing nature of work and develop plans and policies to meet the challenges that come with that change: new models of business, more apprenticeships, opportunities for retraining for new jobs, so that we have sustainable, fulfilling and well-paid employment in the coming decades.
Does your party support the building of the Penlink Rd and bridge from Whangaparaoa Peninsula to Redvale?
Labour supports investment to give residents of Whangaparaoa better transport options and reduce congestion. Within six months of taking office, Labour will review the weightings of the proposed roading and public transport projects in Auckland and assess the difference it will make. Labour is open to the prospect of funding the Penlink Rd and bridge through a PPP. It is so important to the development of the Hibiscus Coast and surrounding areas – easing the congestion as well as providing a second road off the Peninsula. Labour will make more funding available in the Regional Transport Funding, for transport projects of regional importance by doubling the funding range of $70m-$140m to $140m-$280m.